IT policy brings in $150m investment: Atta -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

IT policy brings in $150m investment: Atta

ISLAMABAD: Minister for Science and Technology Prof Attaur-Rahman said government’s investor-friendly Information Technology (IT) policy brought in an investment of $150 million last year.

Addressing a seminar organized by Cisco Systems, the minister said the investment volume in IT was expected to touch $400 million mark in the next fiscal

“These figures are not based on Memoranda of Understanding but reflect the real money that has been invested in Pakistan,” he added.

The minister urged Cisco to set up 50 training academies all over Pakistan during the next nine to 10 months. At present Cisco have two regional academies in the country.

He said government’s programmes for IT training, development of human resources, infrastructure development and an enabling environment have begun to bear fruits. “The IT sector has become one of the most dynamic sectors of investment in Pakistan,” he said and added that a number of foreign companies were making investment in Pakistan.

To ensure quality IT education, the government was establishing a National Accreditation Council and a National Testing Service where all the IT graduates would be required to undergo a test after completing their courses, he said. After the success of medical transcription training programme, he said, the government would launch the legal transcription programme, which would create more jobs and bring in foreign exchange.

The rates of bandwidth in Pakistan, he said, were the lowest in the region. Atta said a large Call Centre with 10,000 people was being established in Lahore by Align Technologies.

By July 2002, he said, high-speed fibre optics link would be in place between Karachi and Peshawar and within this timeframe fibre loop links would also be laid around all the major cities of Pakistan.

The government, he maintained, was also launching Electronic Government programme within 8-10 weeks, which would be out-souring most of the jobs to the private sector Pakistani companies. It would generate employment, improve the financial standing of Pak IT firms and build their track record.

The e-commerce programme, he said, was also on its way and the initiative was being exposed to critical review through website. He said by the end of the next month, inputs from various sources would be amalgamated and synthesized. He said a time-frame was also being devised for banks to bring them into electronic era.

Country Manager Cisco Pakistan Agha Aleem Ahmed said the purpose of Cisco Expo was to provide the latest networking technology solutions to local business leaders and senior technology managers. He said Pakistan was rapidly becoming a centre for e-commerce activities with increasing number of organizations and business embracing the power of the Internet.

The technical session of the Cisco Expo 2001 dilated upon IP-Optical, Content Delivery, Broad-band Access, Security and Virtual Private Networks.

Source: The News