President Dr. Arif Alvi chairs meeting of taskforce on emerging technologies

Islamabad, December 17, 2019 (PPI-OT): Emerging technologies like Artificial Intelligence, Block chain, Robotics and Internet of Things (IoTs) are poised to unleash the next wave of digital disruption, and industrial sectors should prepare for it, said President Dr. Arif Alvi, while chairing a meeting of the Taskforce on Emerging Technologies, at Aiwan-e-Sadr, Islamabad today. The meeting was also attended by Federal Minster for Information Technology and Telecommunication, Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui, and various IT experts from across the country. Dynamically evolving Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) were playing a key role towards Digital Transformation and had crossed sectorial significance in terms of fourth industrial revolution, he added.

The President highlighted that digitally-enabled transformation had many components, one of which was to continue to invest in the development of important key digital enablers like digital identity, shared data services, shared business processes, technology centres, etc. and provide incentives for their use across the public sector. Therefore, building an innovation ecosystem was also an essential ingredient, he added. Moreover, he pointed out that Government was already making efforts to enhance the environment of innovation through different start-ups in emerging technologies. He also highlighted that we saw very significant role of Technology companies in building Pakistan’s digital economy.

There were many low hanging fruits and with a collective effort we could yield quick and long lasting results, he added. The President said that next decade in Pakistan would be the decade of ICT revolution based on a futuristic telecom infrastructure, for which Pakistan must have necessary ingredients i.e. the infrastructure, a great number of educated youth in IT and Telecom and a population willing to adapt to new technologies. In this regard, he emphasized that digitization of Government, including digital identification machines and voting technology, holds special significance.

Furthermore, cyber tools and apps must also be incorporated in education, health and population planning, biotechnology, security, he said. Emerging Technologies are penetrating all sectors of modern life. Investment in AI is increasing and it is estimated that tech giants spent $20-$30 billion on AI in 2016, with 90 % of this spent on R and D and deployment, and 10 % on Al acquisitions. In terms of Block chain, top ten cases of public sector use are: Digital Currency Payments, Land Registration, Voting (Electronics), Identity Management, Supply chain traceability, Health Care, Voting (proxy), corporate registration, Taxation, and Entitlements Management.

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