LAHORE: The Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry has welcomed the first-ever IT and ITeS (Information Technology Enabled Services) strategy to increase Pakistan’s IT exports, up to $10 billion in the next three years and hoped that this greatest initiative would be proved a great reward for the economy. “It is good to see that the Ministry of Information Technology and Communication is well aware of the importance of this sector and evolved the first-ever IT and ITeS strategy”, LCCI President Kashif Anwar said in a statement and also appreciated the commitment of Caretaker Federal Minister for Information Technology and Telecommunication Dr. Umar Saif. LCCI President also expressed gratitude to Caretaker Federal Minister for Finance Dr. Shamshad Akhtar who has said that the economic growth has to be backed by structural reforms. Kashif Anwar said that the problem cannot be solved until it is properly identified and it is a good sign for the economy that the present regime is well aware of the issues and their solution. He said that Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry has always highlighted the importance of Information Technology sector which is playing the role of engine of growth in economic development of various countries around the globe. He said that Information Technology is the only sector in which Pakistan can achieve excellence by investing in human capital as in the modern era, the human intellect is far more important than natural resources. Kashif Anwar said that establishment of a venture in IT sector takes much less time than setting up an industrial unit and human resources are more important than financial resources in this connection. He said that IT sector has mathematical exponential growth. He said that the technological advancement in the 21st century, especially digitization, has revolutionized almost every aspect of life, including the way we live, work and communicate. Countries are working on technological expansion according to the requirements of the 4th Industrial revolution so that they can become an active part of the Global Digital Economy whose volume is more than 10 trillion dollars. He said that Pakistan’s IT industry has come a long way in the last few decades and today it has become a major contributor to the national economy. He said that the statistics of the Board of Investment, the IT industry contributes 1% to Pakistan’s GDP. According to an estimate, there are 10,000 IT companies in Pakistan and more than 500,000 IT professionals are associated with this sector, while our country ranks fourth in Freelance Development. He said that there are more than 20 IT Parks in our country. To fully utilize the potential of this sector, it is important that we invest more in our IT infrastructure, promote innovation and encourage collaboration between the private sector and the government. Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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