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February 3, 2018

Technology, training for 50,000 artisans planned


February 3, 2018

Islamabad: The government is committed to providing technology and training to 50,000 artisans and bringing them online on ‘Made in Pakistan’ portal through the Universal Service Fund Company.

This was revealed by Minister of State for Information Technology and Telecommunication Anusha Rehman while chairing the 57th meeting of the Board of Directors of Universal Service Fund Company here on Friday.

The minister, who was also the chairperson of the USF Company’s Board, said the government wanted to take Pakistan digitally forward. The board welcomed new CEO of the Universal Service Fund Company Rizwan Mustafa Mir as the new director on the board.

It also took into consideration the agenda pertaining to the provision of Information and Communication Technology to Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises in Pakistan. The board said the micro, small and medium enterprises in Pakistan could be termed as the backbone of the economy because they constituted nearly 80% of the enterprises in Pakistan.

It added that Pakistan had a population of around 200 million and a workforce of around 65 million with the enterprises. The participants said by providing access to digital platform and bringing MSMEs online, the real potential could be reaped and has surely create opportunity to propel Pakistan to higher-income country.

They also made a sub-committee headed by Amir Ibrahim, CEO Jazz (Member board of directors) with Mudassar Hussain, Member Telecom and Yusuf Hussain, CEO of the Ignite Co, to oversee the e-commerce project finalisation being executed by USF company.

The board members including IT secretary Rizwan Bashir Khan, Member Telecom; Mudassar Hussain, Aamir Ibrahim; CEO Jazz, Daniel Ritz CEO PTCL Azfar Manzoor; VP ISPS; Kaukab Iqbal Chairman Consumers Association and the senior management of USF Co also attended the meeting.

Also in the day, the Board of Directors of Ignite - National Technology Fund (formerly National ICT R&D Fund) under the chairmanship of IT and Telecom State Minister Anusha Rahman reviewed the progress on award of National Incubation Centre, Quetta.

On the recommendation of the Ignite company, it resolved to approve the award of NIC Quetta contract to Lums/BUITEMS. The minister reviewed the timeline for inauguration of the National Incubation Centre, Karachi, for which the contract between Ignite and LMKT was signed on Feb 1 during a ceremony held at the PM Secretariat in Islamabad.

The board also congratulated the Ignite team on successful launch of DigiSkills Training Program in a ceremony. The board directed the Ignite company to ensure that Digiskills programme is launched within the timelines given by the Board and in the contract.

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