Federal Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication (MoITT) launched Pakistan’s largest Information Technology (IT) Park project in Karachi to make the city a gateway for an innovative future. The Foundation Stone was laid by Federal Minister for IT Syed Amin-Ul-Haque in a ceremony held at the site near Karachi Airport on Monday. More than 20,000 IT professionals will get job opportunities after the completion of this project costing an amount of PKR 42 billion.
Speaking at the event, the Chief Guest, Federal Minister for IT and Telecommunication, Syed Amin-Ul-Haque heartily congratulated the people of Karachi, Sindh and the whole country on the launch of the project. He said MQM’s first priority whenever resources are available has been to launch projects of public interest, Karachi IT Park is a big example in this connection. Karachi IT Park is the largest IT project of its kind in Pakistan, which will benefit not only the citizens of Karachi, but also the IT professionals and companies of Sindh and the rest of Pakistan.
Haque highlighted that the Project titled “Establishment of IT Park, Karachi” was approved by ECNEC in its meeting held on June 4, 2021 at capital cost of PKR. 41 billion & 39 Crore (USD 186.658 Million) including PK 35 billion 13 Crore (USD 158.416) million from The Export-Import Bank of Korea (Exim Bank) as Loan and PSDP local share of PKR. 6 billion 25 Crore (USD 28.242) Million. The project shall be completed in June 2026.
The Federal IT Minister while congratulating the entire team including the MOITT officials, Pakistan Software Export Board (PSEB) for the IT Park project said that their hard work day and night has played a major role. The dream of the Karachi IT Park project had to go through a long process. This dream has come true by overcoming all the difficulties to get the project approved.
Syed Amin-Ul-Haque said that the purpose of these parks is to provide a place where innovative businesses could develop and prosper. Most Software technology/IT parks provide ample space for business development. Governments all over the world often invest in these technology parks to boost their regional and national economies.
He said; Technology parks must comply with basic infrastructure requirements such as clean facilities and ample working space. However, tech parks are also equipped with the latest technology and telecommunication facilities that make it easy to establish and manage a business. The purpose of these parks is to provide a place where innovative businesses can develop and prosper. The main objective of technology parks is to support the creation and development of knowledge-based enterprises. The range of services offered by the parks is closely linked to the functions that they have to fulfill. The benefits of the technology parks are not limited to enterprises and tenants of the parks, but also for companies outside the parks.
The top 3 benefits of the technology park are Boosting in knowledge-based Economy, Entrepreneurship and the latest Technologies. IT Park Karachi is an eleven Storeys (8 Storeys above and 3 underground) self-contained building having covered areas of 106,449 Square meters. The Technology Park, Karachi is providing office space to approx. 225 startups and Small to Medium enterprises and other ancillary facilities like testing laboratories, Class rooms, industry academia linkage center, and auditorium etc. It shall generate more than 20,000 jobs for IT professionals.
He said that the Ministry of IT and Telecommunication has achieved many milestones in the last 4 years including a long list of policies. Mentioning the projects related to ICT and connectivity in last 4 years, he said that the MOITT by Universal Service Fund has launched 70 Projects of OFC and broadband in four provinces at a cost of PKR. 65 billion. In the province of Sindh, 20 projects of NGBSD and OFC worth PKR. 16.30 billion has been started so far in 20 districts, including Tharparkar, Nawabshah, Khairpur, Larkana, Badin, Jacobabad, Shikarpur, Mirpurkhas and Dadu.
Haque said that for the first time in Pakistan, smartphone manufacturing licenses were issued, under which 29 companies are now manufacturing smartphones and digital devices in Pakistan. National Incubation Centers were established in Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, Peshawar, Quetta and recently in Faisalabad and Hyderabad as well. As a result of our initiatives, the volume of IT exports has reached $USD 2.62 billion, an increase of 47%, while 30 software technology parks (STPs) were established across the country under public-private partnership. With an increase of 800%, the amount of investment for Pakistani startups has reached $USD 818 million in 4 years. Steps have been taken to provide IT training facilities of international standard to the fresh IT graduates. The Center of Excellence project for youth training in University of Karachi is under consideration. We have registered 3.1 million people in DG Skills program.
Former Federal Minister Dr Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui, Special Assistant to CM for IT Ms Tanzeela Umm-Habiba, Counsel General of South Korea, Chief Secretary Sindh Dr Suhail Rajput also addressed the ceremony. Earlier Member IT & caretaker MD Pakistan Software Export Board Syed Junaid Imam delivered welcome speech and highlight the salient features of the IT park project. The ceremony was also attended by Foreign Diplomats, MQM Members of National and Provincial Assembly, Federal and Provincial Secretary IT, Academia, representatives of EXIM Bank Korea, officials of Pakistan Software House Association (P@SHA), prominent Business and Industrial Personalities and Professionals.