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October 12, 2018

Chinese firms discuss investment in IoT solutions

Business

October 12, 2018

KARACHI: Chinese tech companies are taking increasing interest in the underdeveloped information technology sector of Pakistan as they are about to launch financial, transportation, and internet-of-things (IoT) solutions in the country to take first-mover advantage, people in the know said on Thursday.

“At least two Chinese companies are at various levels of discussion with the government and contacting local potential partners, and soon investment will start pouring in the sector,” an industry official said, requesting anonymity.

Hangzhou-based Jumore Holdings Group, a large conglomerate combining supply chain service, financial service and e-commerce, is willing to enter Pakistan’s market with a financial solution platform to help companies collect capital from their clients.

“Such a platform would facilitate two countries’ companies working together on a large number of projects in various sectors,” the official added.

Pakistan has no online payment gateway so far. Avanza Group and Premier Systems signed an agreement in August this year to formally establish Avanza Premier Payment Services, the country’s first domestic online payment gateway, which would spur innovation in the domestic market by encouraging the community to pay online and make digital payments easier and widely available for banking customers.

Earlier this year, Ant Financial Services Group, an affiliate of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, agreed to acquire 45 percent stake worth around Rs20 billion in a subsidiary of Norwegian telco Telenor to broaden access to financial services through digital payment solutions.

Ecommerce players see the entry of a global leading online and mobile payment platform as a good omen for the market where 90 percent of online orders of Rs9.8 billion were still fulfilled using cash-on-delivery in the past fiscal year.

Notwithstanding, ecommerce growth record is considerable.

Consumers carried out 0.8 million of ecommerce transactions worth Rs4.8 billion in the first quarter of 2018, up 100.6 percent in volume and 50.5 percent in value over the previous year.

Beijing-based Megvii Technology is also seeking entry into Pakistani market to develop apps and other software for transportation departments.

One of its technologies could recognise vehicles’ number plates.

Megvii Technology is an industrial internet of things solution provider.

Megvii Technology platform is being used by many popular brands like Alipay, mobile photo editing app provider Meitu, ride-hailing service Didi Chuxing, computer maker Lenovo Group, smartphone supplier Xiaomi, China Merchants Bank and China Citic Bank.

China Boqi Sci-Tech Company, providing environmental protection solutions on flue-gas

desulfurisation and denitrification, as well as pursuing solid waste disposal and water pollution treatment, clean energy and energy saving projects, is already pursuing some projects in local market.

“They would like to connect with local project potential partners for further discussion,” an industry official said.

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