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Pakistan Telecommunications Authority (PTA) in collaboration with The Internet Society -Asia Pacific (ISOC-APAC) is holding three days INET Islamabad – Pakistan’s first-ever conference on the Digital Economy and the role the Internet can play in sustainable development. The inauguration ceremony was held at a local hotel today. The three-day conference running from November 16-18is featuring national and international speakers and ICT experts. The steps required and being taken towards a digital economy in Pakistanis being discussed during the conference. ICT agenda required for sustainable development is also a focus of the conference.

Special Assistant to the Prime Minister of Political Affairs and the chief guest at INET Barrister Zafarullah Khan appreciated the efforts of the Internet Society and the PTA in bringing to the fore issues at the national level, the important role the Internet and ICTs play and how the Internet has been one of the mankind’s greatest inventions. He also emphasized the need for inclusive sustainable development across all sectors and the need for Cyber Security.

Earlier on, Dr. Syed Ismail Shah, Chairman PTA, opened the conference and highlighted the importance of a forum like INET where the challenges, opportunities and required development towards a progressive ICT industry can be discussed in an open and collaborative manner. He said that broadband penetration has increased from less than 2 percent to more than 10 percent within last one year exhibiting the vast growth potential for the sector and direct and indirect benefits for the economy.

“Affordable and reliable access to the Internet and Trust in the Internet to provide a secure cyberspace are two things that are critical to the Digital Economy. Both these issues need a collaboration-by-many approach no one stakeholder group alone can make it happen”, said Rajesh Singh, the head of the Asia-Pacific region at ISOC in his welcome speech. Along with other panelists, he also emphasized how affordable connectivity and reliable Internet access is key for all sectors of the economy at large.

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