FY24 Budgets for USF and Ignite Approved

Federal Minister for IT and Telecommunication, Syed Amin Ul Haque, recently chaired a meeting of the Universal Service Fund (USF) and Ignite Policy Committee to approve their annual budgets for the fiscal year 2023-24. The budget for USF was set at Rs. 21.242 billion, while Ignite’s budget was approved at Rs. 3.206 billion.

During the meeting, the CEO of USF, Haaris Mahmood Chaudhary, provided an update on the progress of ongoing projects. Minister Haque expressed concerns over the limited availability of Letters of Credit (LCs), which is causing difficulties for telecom companies in importing equipment and upgrading their systems, leading to delays in completing USF projects.

In addition to the budget approval, Minister Haque also presided over the Policy Committee meeting of the Research & Development Fund, where Ignite’s CEO presented details of future projects. The committee approved Ignite’s annual budget for FY24.

Separately, the CEOs of Ufone, Jazz, and Telenor, namely Hatem Bamatraf, Aamir Ibrahim, and Irfan Wahab, respectively, held a meeting with Minister Haque. The discussions primarily focused on matters related to the telecom sector.

Minister Haque emphasized his commitment to resolving issues faced by the IT and telecom industry and safeguarding the rights of cellular users. He assured that efforts are being made to address these concerns through appropriate channels, and he remains optimistic about achieving positive outcomes for the industry.