Stimulus package for IT sector demanded
LAHORE: Chairman Task Force on Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) Salim Ghauri has urged the government to announce a stimulus package for the IT industry.
In a meeting with IT professionals from Karachi, the ICT chairman agreed with them that the government needed to take speedy steps to support the IT industry amid the ongoing global financial meltdown.
He said the government should accelerate its public sector automation plan in order to engage IT companies within the country. He urged large IT companies to outsource their work to smaller companies and at the same time take them along in the crisis-like situation of the present day.
Ghauri said 1,200 IT companies are registered with the Pakistan Software Export Board (PESB), majority of which are passing through a hard time because of the severe recession in the US and other Western economies.
Ghauri also urged IT companies to get registered with the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) to expose their real export potential in the eyes of the government. He said only 179 IT companies are so far registered with the SBP and their export volumes show only a meager amount in comparison with the actual size of the industry.
He noted that the objectives of the Task Force included the development of domestic software/computer hardware and telecom equipment industry, development of citizen centric applications/services especially in local language, raising quality and enrolment of IT education, creating large employment opportunities in IT/Telecom, making Pakistan a major manpower exporter, making recommendations for the promotion of IT/Telecom sectors, suggest incentives and estimate the investment requirements for the government and private sector.
He said the recommendations of the ICT Task Force will go not only into the next five year plan (2010-2015) but also into making contingency planning.
Source: The News