Experts term digital divide as a major obstacle in boosting digital trade

Statesman Report
ISLAMABAD: To address existing digital divide and to promote digital trade in Pakistan, tax rationalization for ICT sector and development of telecom infrastructure in Pakistan has a vital role to play.
All stakeholders need to put collaborative efforts to provide enabling environment with the focus on information technology and telecommunication in the country. Member Prime Minister’s Taskforce on IT and Telecommunication, Pervez Iftikhar said this while sharing his views at virtual workshop ‘Toward achieving a sustainable regional integration in Pakistan: Digital trade and health integration’ organized by the Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI), in collaboration with: UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP) here.
The workshop was attended by a variety of stakeholders including Ministry of Commerce, Federal Board of Revenue, Ministry of Information Technology, Electronic Certification and Accreditation Council (ECAC), National Tariff Commission, Pakistan Telecommunication Authority, 1-link, Competition Commission of Pakistan, Punjab Procurement Regulatory Authority, Planning Commission of Pakistan, Trade Development Authority of Pakistan, Technical Education & Vocational Training Authority, and Unilever, amongst others.
While introducing the ESCAP’s initiative to measure the digital regional integration, Dr Yann Duval, UNESCAP, informed the participants that the country study on with SDPI on digital exports aims to play facilitating role to support decision-makers prioritizing different areas of regional integration.