Enabling Policy, Technological Advancement and Financial Revolution to drive growth and social development in Pakistan
LAHORE: Eminent speakers from the Telecom & IT sectors emphasized enabling policy, technological advancement and financial revolution would drive growth and spur economic activity in Pakistan. This was concluded today at the 9TH Pakistan TELECON 2016 organized by Shamrock Conferences International at the Marriott Hotel Islamabad.
Chairman PTA, Syed Ismail Shah in his keynote address stressed the need for recognizing the window of opportunity for Pakistan and encouraged the private sector and entrepreneurs to do more. He said, “Pakistan is on a growth strategy, we need collaborated and mutual handholding of various stakeholders.”
The theme of the conference “At the Crossroads of Revolutionary Technology Challenges” was carried forward through two dedicated sessions on regulatory and technology followed by a panel discussion.
Nadeem Hussain, a visionary financial specialist while introducing his new venture, Planet N Group, said, “The financial revolution for the unbanked people of Pakistan requires an under-Rs.1000 smart phone with embedded APIs, allowing the rural and unbanked population to open a bank account, obtain credit, make payments and watch TV for free.”
Examining the regulatory framework to determine the performance, potential and the future strategy for the nation’s progress in the Telecom and IT sectors, Wahaj Siraj, CEO & Co-Founder of Nayatel opined that the industry had huge potential, it was time for the regulator and the private sector to team up for favorable outcomes. Meanwhile, Syed Ahmad, Chairman of P@SHA was of the view that piracy is a major impediment and PEMRA rules were old and not conducive, lacking contractual enforcement; taxation was one of the biggest issues hurting the IT industry.
The session on ‘Technology’ was chaired by Salman Ansari, a former advisor MOiTT, who engaged the speakers by asking them how they saw technology unfolding for Pakistan. This session was focused on exploring new opportunities and factors that drive technology deployment, while the experts discussed how to make next-generation technologies accessible for all.
Irfan Wahab Khan, Deputy CEO, Telenor spoke about how amazing products were strengthening the digital ecosystem in Pakistan; he said, “technology is transforming seamlessly.” Meanwhile, two visiting technology specialists, Damian Bethke, Deputy GM, Global Message Services AG from Switzerland and Oguz Kuchkbarak, CEO & Managing Partner, ODC Business Solutions from Turkey, spoke about telecom & IT experiences in their respective countries.
An interesting aspect of TELECON 2016 was the Panel Discussion on the global theme of World Telecom Day 2016, “ICT Entrepreneurship for Social Impact” which was chaired by Jehan Ara, President, P@SHA and a specialist in nurturing entrepreneurship and startups. The panel comprising of Asim Sheharyar Hussain, MD, Pakistan Software Export Board (PSEB), Shahida Saleem, Team Lead Ilm 2, Mohammad Nasrullah, VP, Customer Solutions CONVO and Junaid Iqbal, MD, Careem Networks Pakistan, concluded that data protection law was a long standing issue that needs attention.
Meanwhile earlier in his opening remarks, the Convener of the forum and Chairman, SHAMROCK Conferences International, Menin Rodrigues stated that the national telecommunication objectives and policies need timely realignments to accommodate the rapid technological advancements in the global telecom arena.