In a significant move to address unemployment challenges, the Pakistani government, under the leadership of Caretaker Prime Minister Anwarul Haq Kakar, inaugurated 39 e-Rozgaar centers in Islamabad. This initiative was officially launched by IT Minister Dr. Umar Saif, who highlighted the ambitious goal of establishing 10,000 e-Rozgaar centers nationwide.
The government has allocated Rs. 1.0 billion for these centers through public/private partnerships, providing interest-free loans to selected individuals and companies. The project aims to address the challenges faced by over 1.5 million freelancers, including the lack of necessary facilities like internet access and suitable workspaces. The government envisions accommodating one million freelancers in these centers, potentially boosting annual IT exports by $10 billion.
Additionally, Dr. Umar Saif announced breakthroughs in the digital payment gateway for freelancers, with plans to create 10,000 accounts under a pilot project starting February 1, 2024. This initiative would allow freelancers to receive funds through PayPal, paving the way for larger-scale third-party agreements for fund collection.
The government is actively working on technology infrastructure, ensuring the availability of the 5G spectrum and planning to lay an additional 200,000 kilometers of optical fiber cable across the country. The minister also highlighted achievements in policy implementation and the establishment of the Telecommunication Tribunal, meeting long-standing demands from the telecom sector. Notable initiatives include the launch of the Pakistan Startup Fund, the “Smartphones for All” initiative, and the creation of a research and development fund for mobile phone manufacturing companies.