Govt woos investors to inject capital into startup fund

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ISLAMABAD: Caretaker Federal Minister for Information Technology and Telecommunication Dr Umar Saif has revealed that steps are being taken to attract global investors to inject money into the proposed venture capital fund for startups.

In his regard, the minister announced in a statement, he would visit Saudi Arabia soon while the government was working on setting up 5,000 joint e-working centres for freelancers.

Saif highlighted that interest-free loans were being acquired to establish the e-working centres to facilitate freelancers, which would result in millions of employment opportunities in Pakistan. He pointed out that there was positive discussion with Caretaker Finance Minister Dr Shamshad Akhtar on a five-point agenda related to the IT sector.

The issue of keeping dollar proceeds by the IT industry was discussed in detail and good news would be announced soon. “This move will not only bring overseas IT accounts to Pakistan and restore investor confidence, but also accelerate the flow of dollars into the country and increase the volume of IT exports immediately.”

Furthermore, the IT minister emphasised that the Pakistan Software Export Board (PSEB) should redefine its role in a bid to assist IT companies in getting international clients and business as well as to promote brand Pakistan in the global market. He made those remarks while presiding over the 58th meeting of PSEB on Thursday.

“Pakistan has a unique position in terms of IT professionals and time zone; it is very important to introduce its IT/IT-enabled services and products to the world in the required manner,” the minister stressed, adding that PSEB must collaborate with trade missions in Pakistani embassies the world over to help grow exports of IT companies.

Saif directed PSEB to take and expedite all necessary steps for training 200,000 IT professionals to add $5 billion to IT exports. The meeting discussed matters related to the overall IT industry and increasing investment in the country.

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