Information and communication technology is the key enabler of socio economic development: Anusha Rahman

Islamabad, March 12, 2016 (PPI-OT): The Minister for IT Mrs. Anusha Rahman has been invited by UNESCO and ITU for the formulation of Policy to use technology for the proliferation of education. While addressing this forum at UNESCO’s Mobile Learning Week at Paris, Minister for IT, Mrs. Anusha Rahman said, “ICT is the key enabler of socio economic development.

The Government of Pakistan under the visionary leadership of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has accorded its highest priority to the development of ICT infrastructure and applications to accelerate the digitization in the country. With the launch of 3G/4G the internet penetration in the country upped from 3% to over 15% in short space of one year. Recently the present Government has issued a long awaited Telecom Policy, marked as landmark document by Industry experts for the incorporation of numerous measures to accelerate the digitization in the country.”

Minister for IT, mentioned during the course of discussion, “One of the potential business cases of ICT industry is to use the Mobile Technology as a vehicle to help bring high quality learning to people who did not have access to it. This can lead to devise strategies which can ensure that widely owned mobile devices facilitate the learning of groups that are underserved educationally, including economically disadvantaged families, women and girls, people with disabilities and people living in rural areas”.

She has mentioned her Governments endeavours to use the technology for the uplift of socio economic development through public private partnership. ICT for Girls project is one the endeavours in place under which thousands of Girls will be trained by Microsoft on coding and computing to increase their employability potential.

She further highlighted that another project with the partnership of Cisco and Microsoft is in process where the young children from the public schools of ICT region will be trained in practical IT education. Reiterating her Government’s vision of providing affordable and accessible ICT services to the masses, through USF billions of Rupees are being spent to provide telecom and broad band services to underserved and un served areas of the country.

She emphasized,” The focus should be to define the characteristics of high quality mobile learning content and models which will prompt the production and wide dissemination of this content. Through mutual collaboration with the stake holders of the education and ICT sectors of the country we can develop mobile technologies which can accelerate the use and sharing of Open Educational Resources and simultaneously better support contents in local languages.

Since many educators are not effectively trained to facilitate learning, another possible investment for ICT industry can be the development the Mobile Technologies that can help support teachers and make instructions more effective. It can also enable new pedagogies that improve the quality and relevance of learning. Such mobile technologies can build the capacities of teachers helping ensure that they are able to provide quality teaching.”

She further said, “By Facilitating knowledge sharing between countries, organizations, and individuals, the ICT industry must focus on earlier roll outs of educational technologies to ensure that new investment in ICT meaningfully improve student learning. She has emphasized the need of sharing the experiences of member countries more frequent basis to learn and scale the best solutions at respective countries.”

IT Minister called upon UNESCO Director General Ms. Irina Bokova. Minister shared with her the vision and endeavours of current Government to spur the socio economic development through ICT. UNESCO DG has lauded the role and efforts of current Government and remarked it highly impressive. It was decided to scale up the scope of cooperation for Pakistan. On the side lines, Minister interacted with the Ministers from Albania, Elsalvador and ITU Director Mr. Brahma Sanou.

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