Prime Minister Imran Khan has said that he always urged his team not to panic, and “today, I am telling the opposition ‘ghabrana nahi’ (don’t panic)”, as PPP and the JUI-F leadership met to discuss no-confidence motion against the PTI government.

The premier was addressing the launching ceremony of the National E-Tijarat Portal on Monday.

“What was said about me here is which sentence I have uttered the most, so I want to tell you that what I have said the most is ‘don’t panic’,” he said jokingly.

PM Imran said that when the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf came to power, “the situation was very unfriendly and the country was about to bankrupt”.

“I was worried the team would panic, so I urged them not to panic.

“This is what I used to say to my team when we were playing against the toughest cricket team [of that time] the West Indies and today I am telling the opposition not to panic.”

The prime minister urged the younger generation not to miss the IT revolution which would generate revenue for them, assuring of government’s all-out facilitation.

“This is the technology revolution. The youth should in no way miss it. We expect the country’s IT exports to reach $50 billion in a few years,” the prime minister said, adding that the government would remove all impediments to the IT sector to facilitate youth so that they could benefit from the technology revolution.

He said the IT industry was youth-specific as tech giants became billionaires in their 20s and had old-aged people as their subordinates.

The prime minister said consequent to the government’s incentives, the IT exports reached around $4 billion which would further increase to fill the import-export gap.

Announcing zero-tax for registered e-freelancers, the prime minister said American technologist Bill Gates visited Pakistan last week on his invitation as he wanted to involve him in Pakistan’s IT sector.

He said he would come up with good news in a few days in that regard. However, he also lauded Bill Gates’s contribution to Pakistan for polio eradication as the country reported no case last year.

The prime minister said the country’s elite-centric system always resisted the common man from excelling. “However, despite having no developed systems, Pakistan’s youth have immense potential.”

He said the government had also introduced a core education curriculum for up to fifth class so far to do away with the systemic discriminations of English and Urdu medium education.

Exemplifying a freelancer girl Nadia from Gilgit, PM Imran said IT provided the easiest opportunity, particularly for women, to contribute to the national development. Even the 60 percent population of the country under the age of 30 could be used for this purpose, he added.

He said having an old connection with the overseas Pakistanis, he knew their potential as they excelled in numerous fields abroad wherever they got a level-playing one.

The prime minister also appreciated his Special Assistant on E-Commerce Aon Abbas Buppi for his concise and informative presentation as well as his dedicated efforts to promote e-commerce.

He told the gathering that the incumbent government had inherited a bankrupt country but being a sportsman, he knew how to sail through the difficulties and always advised his cabinet never to worry about it.

Earlier, the prime minister also distributed awards among the youngsters running their startups in multiple fields.

In his address, Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin said the prime minister always stressed on digital economy knowing the fact that the world was going towards the very course.

He said using the technology, people could now open their accounts, make transactions, buy houses and cars while sitting at one place.

He said Pakistan also wanted to move side by side with the world which required the upgradation of internet services. He told the gathering that while awarding 5G spectrum licence, the government would prioritise quality services, not revenue.

SAPM on E-Commerce Buppi said in 2021, Pakistan’s e-commerce market volume was $4 billion while the volume of global e-commerce market was estimated at around $30 trillion.

He said through the first e-commerce policy, the government’s e-commerce trade also enhanced freelance payments from $5,000 to 25,000.

Buppi told the gathering that there were around one million active freelancers in the country and during last year, the country received $364 million investment through startups.

He hoped that Pakistan’s startups would emerge to compete with the e-commerce giants like Alibaba as more and more people registered on Amazon.

The SAPM said the country had around 110 million active internet users and the government was striving for enhancing the 3G and 4G connectivity to maximum areas which was an essential tool for e-commerce.

He told the gathering that the E-Tijarat Portal would impart freelancing education to youth and promote local products through localised portals. A National E-Commerce Council will also be established to accredit the freelancers for their worldwide recognition.

Moreover, the portal would also provide information on logistics companies, banks, online transfer facilities, shipment, market access, taxation, bookings for logistics, and live data of startups and freelancers.


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