ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: The Fazal Software Technology Park was inaugurated in Pakistan on Thursday under the Pakistan Software Export Board (PSEB), a department under the Ministry of IT & Telecommunication.
The Fazal Software Technology Park is a great example of Public and Private Sector Cooperation with 10 IT Companies already having occupied 40,000 square feet of space.
The Secretary IT Shoaib Ahmed Siddiqui was the Chief Guest while the Inauguration Ceremony was attended by the President Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) and Senior Officials from the ministry, ICCT, and PSEB.
This is the second STP inaugurated in Pakistan in less than three months. The Gilgit STP, set up in collaboration with SCO, was inaugurated in October last year.
In his statement for this occasion, the Federal Minister for IT & Telecom Syed Amin Ul Haque said that Pakistan’s IT Industry is receiving top priority from the present government, which has been working diligently to improve the state of Pakistan’s economy, create jobs and lift the overall quality of life.
As a result, the industry is being provided strong government support and extremely attractive incentives and there are several projects intended to facilitate and assist IT Industry in its growth trajectory and to ensure continued upward momentum in local and export earnings.
The federal minister said that the government is prioritizing the development of Special Economic Zones (SEZs) and Special Technology Zones in order to promote indigenization for reducing our over-reliance on imports and boost our exports.
For SEZs, the ministry of it has rolled out strong incentives which include a 10-year exemption from income tax, property tax, other taxes, and customs duties.
A 10-year exemption on dividend income and long-term capital gains from Investment along with exemption from GST on goods and services for consumption within zones.
“Pakistanis can rightly be proud of the fact that Pakistani IT companies are providing products and services to the world’s largest companies. The state of the art work on latest technologies such as AI, Robotics and Driverless cars is being conducted in Pakistan and large IT companies including US companies have set up R & D centers in Pakistan”, said Syed Amin Ul Haque.
The minister said that there was strong demand for STPs in the Country due to the booming IT industry and hence there is a need to find a faster way to deliver to the IT industry. That’s how we came up with the idea of putting inoperative private sector industrial facilities to use.
While addressing the ceremony, the Secretary IT Shoaib Ahmad Siddiqui said that on the directives from Federal Minister Syed Amin Ul Haque, the aggressive work was conducted on an express basis and the result is evident by this inauguration. More good news is on the way as far as the conversion of unused buildings into state-of-the-art STPs is concerned. Work is well on the way towards establishing Software Technology Parks in the Universities.
Shoaib Ahmed Siddiqui said that IT Industry professionals and entrepreneurs for making Pakistan’s ICT Industry a success story for the Country, having achieved a stellar remittance inflow growth rate and making it the largest net exporter in the services sector from Pakistan.
The secretary stressed upon the need for close liaison between the IT industry and public sector entities for ensuring holistic growth of Pakistan’s IT sector.
The Managing Director PSEB Osman Nasir said that PSEB registration fee for IT & ITeS companies including call centers and IT startups, belonging to underserved areas of the Country have been completely waived in order to boost the growth of the IT industry in the underdeveloped parts of the Country and thus contribute to the organic growth of IT Industry across Pakistan.
It is worth mentioning here that Gilgit STP has been a roaring success. Initially, the building was occupied by 73 IT professionals who further trained and mentored IT graduates including females, for a total of 150 IT Professionals thereby significantly expanding the IT Industry ecosystem in Gilgit.
Among the many success stories from Gilgit is “SheDev”, which is a 17-member, all-female Company providing tech solutions to local and international customers.