Pakistan’s largest Information Technology fair – ITCN Asia Expo will be held on September 17-19 at Karachi Expo Center with an aim to provide a platform to the new startups to explore the market for emerging opportunities and earn precious foreign exchange for the exchequer.
A full-day conference, chaired by Minister of IT, Khalid Maqbool will be taking place during the three days exhibition being organized for the 19th straight years by Ecommerce Gateway Pakistan. The conference will focus on youth, innovation, industry and ease of doing business. The discussions will be based not only on highlighting problems faced by the IT sector, but also on ways to find solutions for them.
In addition, an exclusive penal discussion will be organized at the ITCN Asia which will be attended by representatives of relevant government departments to enhance the interaction with IT companies and entrepreneurs practically and effectively.
Umair Nizam, Vice President Ecommerce Gateway Pakistan has informed that the IT industry is vibrant and flourishing in Pakistan owing to the talented youth. The industry could enhance its level at accelerated pace to stand equally at the level of textile sector provided the government invests seriously on human capital and technology for straight 3 to 5 years, he added.
In order to provide a platform to the new startups to explore the market for emerging opportunities, ITCN is being organized annually to create more avenues for foreign exchange earnings for the national exchequer.
According to State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), the exports of IT and IT-enabled services grew to over $1 billion recorded in the outgoing financial year in Pakistan but it could be swelled to $5 billion in few years provided the government and private sector works on an agreed and fast track business plan, he mentioned.
Umair informed that this year the premier IT fair is being incorporated with latest fields and technologies through dedicated symposium on Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Robotics which are very popular especially among the young entrepreneurs in the global markets. Besides, a contest of Robotic naming Robo War will be held on three days between the various companies and designers of robots, which rarely happens in Pakistan.
A session on ecommerce will be taking place, as it is an extremely important and relevant subject currently. On the third day, the event will hold a conference focusing on cyber security which is a big challenge at the moment in the businesses and financial sector. It will be in collaboration with ISACA-an international body works for cyber security.
“We at ITCN Asia decided to push the efforts further on ease of doing business in Pakistan on a priority basis hence we will provide a platform to the autonomous state departments of the country to get the feedback of the aspiring and emerging entrepreneurs and businessmen,” he said. In this regard, dedicated resources are needed in tax department which understand the business and operation of IT sector and implement taxes accordingly, he remarked.
The purpose of ITCN Asia is to bring different players of the IT industry on one platform and connect them. Rather than exploring new territories, there is a need to utilized current pool effectively as the country’s human resource is no less than global standards but they need to be brought together to grow further.
He said that the CPEC is not limited up to infrastructure related projects but also have there are a number of opportunities for Pakistani IT entrepreneurs to export IT products in Chinese market.
ITCN Asia is no more an annual trade fair but it has developed a forum “Friends of ITCN” that continues its activities throughout the year to assess and examine the needs of IT sector and the goals it achieves every year. In this year, the interaction of industry stakeholders at the government and private level will be cemented meaningfully and sustainable results will be generated for the industry and the country, he informed.