Exports of ICT services largely delivered to USA, Middle East and African countries
Pakistan’s IT industry has come a long way and today is the fastest growing export sector of Pakistan.
Pakistan’s export of Information Technology has projected country’s IT industry exports at all-time high for the outgoing financial year of 2016-17.
According to State Bank of Pakistan, Pakistan has received nearly $1 billion through IT industry exports by the banking channel.
State Bank of Pakistan statistics says that exports of IT industry classified as telecommunication, computer and information services surged to the level of $938.640 million in the last financial year.
The exports earning of the IT industry registered a double digit growth of 19 percent or $ 150 million from the financial year 2015-16 which stood at $788.640 million.
Exports of IT or ICT services – in broad terms – are largely delivered to countries and regions such as USA, Middle East and South African countries.
On the other hand, Pakistan Software Export Board (PSEB) stated three times higher exports as compared to State Bank’s numbers.
However, PSEB’s estimation is based on the services various IT companies and software houses rendered to different countries but their reporting is done in different sectors such as financial services, healthcare sector and etc, as well as e-commerce, e-health and e-education.
Besides, the reporting of the freelance work is usually reported through overseas remittances. It should be mentioned that Pakistan is considered as the fourth largest freelance market in the world. The estimation of PSEB suggested that exports of freelancer of IT sector stands at more than $200 million per year.
Short comparison of IT industry Exports of Services and Products in last two years.
IT and Telecommunication is counted as a single industry in Pakistan either under one ministry, or by reporting the inflows of this sector.
State Bank of Pakistan has taken a series of concrete steps to streamline exports income of the IT industry through the banking sector, which could reduce the under-reporting foreign exchange earning of IT and its enabled services.
IT industry has the biggest potential in Pakistan with a capacity to expand itself domestically and internationally for exports of services when it comes to support of the government through policies and tax incentives.