Information highways

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PRESIDENT Dr Arif Alvi has said that the government is taking steps to build information highways and extend the reach of people to the new fourth generation technologies.

Speaking at an international conference on innovation and entrepreneurship on Tuesday, he said that the goal of current leadership was to improve the digital financial system, achieve women empowerment and ensure economic transparency.

There is no doubt that the country is making use of the information technology for its progress and prosperity of its people and this is evident from record IT exports during last year, rapid increase in the use of cellular phones and Internet, increasing popularity of the e-commerce, empowerment of the people through e-wallets and Pakistan becoming exporter of 4G smartphones.

It is rightly said that Covid-19 provided an unexpected jumpstart to digital Pakistan as digital solutions for communication, learning, health, finance and other services prevented large-scale transmission of the virus, while enabling connectivity during periods of mass lockdowns.

Hiccups notwithstanding, there was a large-scale transfer of students to online communication platforms, such as Zoom, and tele-school initiatives.

The pandemic also exposed our shortcomings and the need for national planners as well as other stakeholders to start making necessary investment to prepare Pakistan properly for technological revolution.

Digital access remains heavily reliant on income levels, geographic locations and gender and it is time to take steps to ensure across-the-board availability of world class technologies at affordable prices.

As 5G is the future, we should do preparatory work to brace the technology along with other nations.

 

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