Saturday December 03, 2022

IT exports rise 39pc to $830mln in July-Oct

November 21, 2021
IT exports rise 39pc to $830mln in July-Oct

KARACHI: Pakistan’s IT exports surged 39.26 percent in the first four months of the current fiscal year of 2021/22, a minister said on Saturday, as stay-at-home orders amid the pandemic accelerated transition to digital economy.

Syed Amin Ul Haque, minister for Information Technology and Telecommunication said the IT and Telecom, Information and Communications Technology (ICT) export remittances, including telecommunication, computer and information services have surged to $830 million in July-October of fiscal 2021-22

During July-October of the last fiscal year IT related exports fetched $596 million.

“The net exports for the period -- July-October -- were $630 million which was 75.9 percent of $830 million in exports,” Haque said in a statement. The net exports were $423 million or 70.97 percent of $596 million in exports in the same period of last fiscal year.

The minister hoped that IT exports would exceed the target of $3.5 billion by December 2022.

For the July-October 2021 period, Pakistan’s total exports grew 25 percent to $9.468 billion as compared to $7.576 billion during July-October 2020.

Last year was a disaster for several businesses and economies around the world however more money has flowed into Pakistan’s nascent technology sector during 2021 than in the previous six years combined, with investors from the US, Singapore and the United Arab Emirates joining the rush.

The renewed interest in IT services reflected in the unprecedented investment in tech startups in Pakistan during the last year.

By global standards, the sum poured into the country’s startups this year — about $300 million, according to Crunchbase and Invest2Innovate data — is

tiny. But it’s a record for Pakistan and the funding surge is expected to continue.

A group of young startups have made splashy funding announcements in recent weeks. Quick-commerce startup Airlift unveiled a record $85 million Series B round last month, followed by business-to-business (B2B) venture Bazaar’s record $30 million Series A round.

Last month, Tag, a one-year-old Pakistani startup that offers banking and financial services, raised over $12 million in what is now the largest seed financing round in Pakistan, and Oraan raised $3 million in the largest seed funding closed by a women-led startup in the country.

Earlier this month, Udhaar Book, a Pakistani cashflow management services provider for small businesses, raised $6 million (RM24.94mil) in early funding to digitise mom-and-pop stores.