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It is no secret that Pakistan is currently facing one of its worst economic crises yet. However, while the tech sector has consistently outperformed, it is no longer sufficient to continue progressing at snail’s pace.

It is imperative for us to embark upon finding creative solutions for ourselves so that we may break through this glass ceiling that is currently holding back our growth.

We need to utilise the tech sector such that we may be able to compensate for the losses we are currently experiencing in various other sectors.

According to IT industry experts, the sector is still growing near the levels of its 5-year CAGR – making it an optimum time to re-evaluate our strategies and collect our bearings for maximum impact.

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The key to its management is consistency.

The tech sector will need to step up and exercise more responsibility while governing bodies need to do their part by modernizing tech policies.

IT institutions across the country have strongly advocated policies conducive for the industry and to build an organised tech ecosystem in Pakistan.

We have plenty examples of neighboring countries who have done so successfully which could work as a roadmap for us.

There is also the need to protect and encourage foreign investment in the tech sector, for example, IT & ITeS industry exports totaled approximately $2.6 billion.

However, in order to boost the exports of the IT & ITeS industry and Pakistan’s economic growth, policy implementation & continuity must be ensured. Pakistan must manifest itself as a favorable tech destination.

The year’s trade deficit is propelled by the highest-ever increase in oil prices and commodities in the international market due to supply chain disruptions.

Keeping this in mind, the nation should also work towards diversifying our exports.

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Although exports have been budding in the previous years, it seems unlikely that they may be able to overcome the current trade deficit, especially owing to the increasing costs of conducting business due to petroleum, electricity and gas price increases.

It is therefore incumbent upon us to find sustainable, dependable, and recurrent sources of income.

Foreign exchange is the powerhouse that drives the trade deficit for which the export industry must pick itself up. Of course, there’s no one-stop solution to this economic situation that we face as alleviating societal issues is neither a simple nor a quick process.

But in it’s own way, technology can help reduce poverty by creating more jobs and allowing those in developing countries to reach a wider market. Access to the internet, combined with digital literacy, can open more opportunities for more people to economically support themselves.

After all, technology is helping alleviate climate change, education, economy, voting, health care, public safety, farming, safe drinking water, banking, shopping as well as helping to address social, civic and economic inequalities in Pakistan.

Additionally, Agritech is a significant bread earner for Pakistan and is the highest employer of the labor force of which approximately 10 million are women. This translates to roughly 70% of women being employed, amounting to approximately $57 billion generated.

Conclusively, there is a need to enhance public sector digitisation, support the tech industry including freelancers, improve digital and financial access, strengthen the start-up ecosystem, support technology, have consistent policies and drive adaption to tech.

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We can increase IT exports with a variety of means but building from the grassroots level is the most efficient way of attempting to hack it.

In order to achieve that, we must invest in the appropriate education and training of our youth who are slated to become the IT professionals and leaders of tomorrow.

Furthermore, a proper infrastructure and support system should be in place along with favorable government policies for an appropriate export boost in the current financial climate.

Collaborations across industries as well as public and private sectors also boosts export growth and expansion. Additionally, there is a need for market diversification for which venture funding should be explored and acquired.

Lastly, strict quality assurance measures should be in place in order to enhance customer satisfaction and reliability for consistency in increasing exports.

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The article does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Business Recorder or its owners

Noman Said

The writer is an IT exporter

Comments

200 characters
Syed Awais Ali Shah Nov 28, 2023 06:48pm
Thrilled to witness the dynamic growth of Pakistan's IT industry!
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Bharath Nov 30, 2023 11:36pm
This is good opportunity for Pakistan because the IT companies here in India are moving to Enterprise.
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Tariq Qurashi Dec 05, 2023 12:28pm
From someone who hires developers in the USA, I have heard that Pakistan is often more expensive than India and is less skilled. In fact it was the lack of properly skilled people in their field that made them go to India instead of Pakistan. Given that a lot of excellent training is available on-line now, our developers must try and upgrade their skills to match those of the world market. Having said that, it is IT that is the silver lining on the cloud of economic problems we have. I wish our IT sector the best of luck and advise the government to stay clear of trying to overregulate them, but implement policies that encourage growth in this sector.
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