ISLAMABAD: Pakistan is set to host the Asia Pacific ICT Alliance Awards (APICTA) for the first time ever. This will provide representatives from local companies to meet innovators and entrepreneurs from the region. The event is planned for the first week of December where all 16 member countries are expected to participate.

This was announced by a delegation headed by Stan Singh, that is currently visiting Pakistan.

Mr Singh said the reason for choosing Pakistan was that the country went through a challenging period and the economy was now back on track, and information and communication technology (ICT) sector of the country was growing at a fast pace, with high quality human resource.

He was accompanied by Badar Khushnood as well as Fulvio Inserra.

Local business owners to get chance to meet entrepreneurs from 16 countries

They pointed out that APICTA was an international awards programme which aimed to increase awareness about communication and technology and assist communities in bridging the digital divide.

Mr Singh said the ICT was no more a business enabler but business itself and there was a need to develop a competitive environment among the APICTA members to enhance the quality of IT services.

Current members are Australia, Bangladesh, Brunei Darussalam, China, Chinese Taipei, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Macao, Malaysia, Myanmar, Pakistan, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam and Nepal, whereas South Korea, New Zealand andthe Philippines have applied for membership.

Participants of the programme comprise members of the Asia Pacific ICT Alliance and the key benefit of the awards is gathering help in identifying how member countries can work together for growth of the ICT industry in the region.

Mr Khushnood said [email protected], the apex trade body for the IT and IT-enabled Services (ITeS) industry, was conducting the 18th annual [email protected] ICT awards later in October this year and through a detailed process of evaluation by a jury of world-renowned members.

The winners and runner-ups will consequently be participating in the Asia-Pacific ICT Alliance (APICTA) Awards 2022 to showcase their talent and compete on an international platform.

He said the IT industry was currently the only industry in Pakistan that could grow at an exponential rate and contribute towards export growth in the same spirit by the highest cash flow positive grading and the easiest to expand since the industry relied only on availability of talent and conducive policies to help it grow. He said the ICT sector was the second biggest exporting sector of Pakistan after textile as it had already surpassed rice exports.

The IT industry exports in the last two years have jumped from approximately $1.4 billion in 2020 to $2.62 billion in 2022, and [email protected] had asked the government to maintain consistent policies in IT and telecom for long-term growth in this sector.

Published in Dawn, August 30th, 2022

Categorized in: