IT, ITeS export remittances surge 26.24pc

Pakistan’s information technology (IT) and IT-enabled Services (ITeS) export remittances have surged to $887.470 million at a growth rate of 26.24 percent during the first eight months of the fiscal year 2019-2020, compared to $702.990 million during the same period last year.
Federal Secretary Ministry of IT and Telecommunication Shoaib Ahmad Siddiqui has directed the management of Pakistan Software Export Board (PSEB) to devise a comprehensive marketing plan and prepare strategy to accelerate growth of Pakistan’s IT sector. The federal secretary IT was chairing a meeting to review efforts for enhancing Pakistan’s IT industry exports on Monday.
The meeting was held through video conference and attended by officers of the Ministry of IT and the PSEB.
He also emphasized the need for providing IT companies the opportunities for international business solicitation and enhanced efforts to locate opportunities in North America and Europe.
Earlier, the PSEB Managing Director, Syed Ali Abbas Hasani, in his briefing stated that, Pakistan’s IT and ITeS export remittances, including telecommunication, computer and information services, have surged to $887.470 million at a growth rate of 26.24 percent over the past eight months, in comparison to $702.990 million during the corresponding period last year. The number of registered IT and ITeS companies has increased by a stellar 26.35 percent.
He stated that Korean Exim Bank has principally agreed to provide funding for establishment of an IT Park in Karachi, and that training in emerging technologies of 2,000 fresh IT graduates and professionals working in the industry will start from May 2020. He said that maximum facilitation and strong incentives were being provided to the IT industry. The PSEB is assisting 18 companies this year with coveted international certifications such as ISO 27001, ISO 20001, and CMMI Level-2 and 3. Ten companies have achieved certifications, while the rest are in progress.
Furthermore, the PSEB has facilitated nearly 70 IT companies over the past eight months to participate in numerous events and trade fairs in Canada, China, Dubai, Norway, Saudi Arabia, and the USA.
The secretary IT lauded the achievements of Pakistan’s IT sector, noting that it was a matter of great pride that Pakistani IT companies were providing state-of-the-art products and services to the world’s largest companies. He said that efforts needed to be made to enhance perception of the Pakistan’s IT industry in the global arena and to ensure sustainable growth of Pakistan’s IT industry in the long-term. The government has prepared an incentives package for promotion of information technology sector, envisaging increasing IT sector exports from the current around $1 billion to $10 billion by 2023.
Information technology is emerging as a vital organ of national economy and government is paying great deal of heed to promote IT sector, maintained in official documents.
The incentives package includes various measures and is being designed after a thorough analysis of other important IT destinations of the region such as Philippines, China, Bangladesh, and India.
Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication (MoITT) Secretary Shoaib Ahmad Siddiqui told Business Recorder that the government was focused on increasing IT sector exports to $10 billion as soon as possible. All the stakeholders are on board and the target is very much achievable, Siddiqui added. He also confirmed the incentives package, while saying that government wanted to facilitate that sector, which had huge potential to increase the country’s exports manifold.
A summary to the prime minister is under process to encourage Pakistani products and to give preference to Pakistani software products by all ministries/divisions, which would help in growth of IT business. Special Technology Zones will be developed in the country to promote IT/ITeS growth. In this regard Public Sector Development Program (PSDP) proposal of Rs6.5 billion has been submitted to the Planning Commission by MoITT.
The MoITT has submitted proposal to the PM’s Office for resolving issues related to double taxation of IT companies. This initiative will help in removing impediments in IT business growth as well. A summary to the prime minister is under process to declare Islamabad as “Knowledge City”.
This initiative will promote international branding of Islamabad as an attraction for investment by foreign IT companies.