The National Assembly Standing Committee on Cabinet Secretariat unanimously approved the Special Technology Zones Authority bill, 2021.
The meeting was chaired by MNA Kishwer Zehra, held in Parliament House.
The Committee unanimously assented to the Bill, saying that the Authority, once fully functional, would help ensure the development of the scientific and technological ecosystem through the development of zones to accelerate technology development in the country.
The Chairman Special Technology Zones Authority (STZA) apprised the Committee about the object and reasons of the establishment of the Authority. He informed that the STZA would provide internally competitive and export-oriented structures in addition to developing collaboration between academia, research, and the technology industry.
He further apprised that STZA would also help in creating jobs in the technology sectors, capitalizing on our youth dividends. He also informed that the creation of Authority would also build an environment that would attract foreign direct investment, apart from improved quality of domestic technology products and services and fostering innovation.
Referring to the immense technological potential in the country, the Chairman STZA informed that major technological giants had already expressed their interest in bringing their investments to Pakistan.
He said that the main impediment behind the delay in the process was the lack of a legislative framework for investment protection. He also informed the Committee about the proposed STZs in Islamabad, provincial capitals, Gilgit-Baltistan, and Azad Jammu and Kashmir.
Earlier, the Committee expressed displeasure on the continued absence of the Secretary Cabinet Division from the Committee meetings. The Chairperson decided to proceed against the Secretary under the rules, in case he absents himself from the next meeting of the Committee.
The meeting was attended by MNAs Ali Nawaz Awan, Muhammad Hashim, Shahnaz Saleem Malik, Mir Ghulam Ali Talpur, and Mohsin Dawar, along with Additional Secretary Cabinet Division and other officers of departments concerned.