With the budget announced, the Government of Pakistan is focusing on boosting the IT and Telecom sector of the country as it is one of the prime drivers of a growing economy. The 2019-20 budget focuses on 29 different ongoing and new development projects occurring under the Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP).
Out of the total Rs. 951 billion allocated for the development of the country, around Rs. 43 billion has been dedicated to the growth of science and technology wing of the country. In this Rs. 7.341 billion budget allocation, the government is focusing on the completion of 10 ongoing projects by spending Rs. 1.466 billion from this budget and 19 new schemes will be introduced from the remaining Rs 5.864 billion.
The government is also setting aside Rs. 600 million for the overhaul of 3G/4G services as well as Rs 474 million for sole replacement of GSM networks in Azad and Jammu Kashmir for the uplifting of the infrastructure there. The government also plans to build new technology parks in the capital city under the technology parks development project (TDP) and for that, Rs. 100 million have been allocated.
We recently saw that remittances from the IT sector have seen a staggering 151% growth over the past 5 years plus Pakistan has been labelled as the 3rd most attractive location in regards to offshore services. IT exports have also crossed $3.3 billion a year and it shows this industry is a significant revenue generator for our country.
What are your thoughts regarding the budget allocation for IT and Telecom? Do you think it is adequate for the growth of this sector?