E-Rozgaar Centers for Jobless People in Pakistan

Government of the Pakistan started E-Rozgaar Centers for Jobless People in Pakistan. Caretaker Prime Minister of Pakistan Anwarul Haq Kakar inaugurated 39 e-Rozgaar Centers in Islamabad today.These centers will provide opportunities for individuals and companies by offering interest free loans through public-private partnerships. The government has committed Rs. 1.0 billion for the establishment of e-Rozgaar centers across Pakistan.

During the launch ceremony, IT Minister Dr. Umar Saif announced an ambitious project to set up 10,000 e-Rozgaar centers nationwide. The initial phase will include the establishment of 250 centers in various cities through public and private sectors, with the ultimate goal of reaching 10,000 centers.

Dr. Saif emphasized the significance of IT in this initiative and highlighted the challenges faced by over 1.5 million freelancers, including the lack of essential facilities like internet access and suitable workspaces. The plan is to accommodate one million freelancers in these centers, potentially boosting annual IT exports by $10 billion.

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Work on approximately 40 e-Rozgaar centers is underway, with the expectation that all these centers will be operational by February 19, 2024.

Dr. Saif praised the performance of the IT Ministry during the past four months of the caretaker government. He credited the Special Investment Facilitation Council for facilitating timely policy approvals, allowing IT companies to retain 50 percent of their earnings in foreign currency.

A breakthrough in the digital payment gateway for freelancers was announced, with plans to create 10,000 accounts under a pilot project starting February 1, 2024, enabling freelancers to receive funds through PayPal. The success of this pilot project could lead to larger-scale agreements for fund collection.

Addressing technology infrastructure, Dr. Umar Saif assured the availability of the 5G spectrum, with a spectrum auction scheduled for August 2024. Plans were unveiled to lay an additional 200,000 kilometers of optical fiber cable across the country.

Key achievements highlighted by the minister included the implementation of the right-of-way policy, resolution of conflicts between institutions, and the establishment of the Telecommunication Tribunal. Other initiatives mentioned were the launch of the Rs. 2 billion Pakistan Startup Fund, the “Smartphones for All” initiative, and the creation of an R&D fund to support mobile phone manufacturing companies.

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