The Information Telecommunication (IT) and IT-enabled Service (ITeS) export remittances comprising computer services and call center services surged 23.71 percent to $1.230 billion in the fiscal year 2019-20 compared to $994.848 million during FY 2018-19.
This was revealed in the performance report of the Pakistan Software Export Board (PSEB), the attached department of the Ministry of IT & Telecom, on Friday.
The ITeS export remittances surged from $1.11 billion in May 2020 to $1.230 billion in June 2020 registering a nominal growth of $0.12 million compared to around $76 million during the same period of the previous year (2018-19) as it went up from $917.875 million to $994.848 million.
The ministry has set a target to increase this volume to $5 billion in the next three years.
The ministry spokesperson said that they are committed to increasing IT exports and are taking relevant special steps in this regard. Federal Minister for IT and Telecommunication Syed Amin-Ul-Haque has directed PSEB to take every possible step for achieving the target.
He said that under the Prime Minister’s vision of digital Pakistan it is vital to take forward all the matters related to information technology and connect the youth especially students to the digital world.
He said that the Ministry of IT is playing an important role in coping with the COVID-19 pandemic through information technology, adding that cases are now declining in the country.
The generous incentives from the government and various projects to enhance the capacity and capability of the IT Industry have resulted in strong industry growth rates. Incentives to the industry include zero income tax on IT and ITeS exports till June 2025, tax breaks for the PSEB-registered IT startups for three years, up to 100 percent foreign ownership of IT and ITeS companies, up to 100 percent repatriation of profits for foreign IT and ITeS investors, tax holiday for venture capital funds till 2024, among other incentives.
The spokesperson of the ministry said that 6,000 Pakistan-based IT companies are providing IT products and services to entities in over 100 countries.
Strong incentives are being provided to the IT industry, and there are several projects intended to facilitate and assist the IT industry in its growth trajectory and to ensure continued upward momentum in local and export earnings.
Pakistan was ranked the 3rd-most popular country for freelancing in the world, and Pakistani IT companies are providing products and services to the world’s largest companies.
The ICT industry has been a resounding success story for Pakistan, having achieved stellar remittance inflow growth, and being the largest net exporter in the services sector.
Secretary MoITT Shoaib Ahmad Siddiqui said that the government is focused on increasing IT sector exports as soon as possible. All the stakeholders are on board and the target is very much achievable.
Siddiqui stated that the PSEB had highly trained and experienced assets in the form of commercial counselors in important cities around the world and that they could contribute significantly to projecting Pakistan’s IT and ITeS sector around the globe.
He directed the PSEB to engage and utilize the services of Pakistan’s commercial counselors to enhance Pakistan’s IT and ITeS exports, and for facilitating Pakistan’s IT companies in the overseas markets.