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In a seven day annual conference held under the auspices of South by Southwest (SXSSW) at Austin, Texas, Dr. Umar Saif Chairman Punjab Information Technology Board (PITB) being the first individual from Pakistan delivered keynote address on “Next innovation nation: Pakistan Startup Scene” at the startup village at Austin, Texas, says a message received here today.

Dr. Saif said that Pakistan has underwent a huge transformation in terms of entrepreneurship since the establishment of Plan9 (a project of PITB) and the startup culture has really accelerated and many private/public incubators came into existence in the past four years, which were not only contributing to the national economy but also generating job opportunities, empowerment of youth and expansion in market activity through innovative use of technology in various sectors.

China’s huge investment of US $ 45 billion under China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), beneficial for South Asian countries, Central Asian States, Europe and other parts of the World, confirmed Pakistan’s growing economy potential, which was being acknowledged by all global economic indicators, he added.

While speaking about the demographics of Pakistan, improving economic conditions, power of our youth and the optimistic outlook of the country, Dr. Umar Saif said that the ongoing development projects in the country were yeilding positive results and major change in Pakistan’s economy and the world would witness the progress within the next 5 to 10 years. Pakistan being the world’s sixth country with largest population, world’s third English speaking nation with 60 % young population below the age of 35 years and world’s 9th largest mobile market where youth knew the use of technology has vast potential to join the developed countries, he added.

Talking about entrepreneurship he drew a comparison of the ecosystem before and after the establishment of Plan9 and highlighted various incubators which sprung across the countries and explained to the audience the inspiration behind Plan9 and Plan9’s business model, which was attracting investments from multinational and national business groups.

He also highlighted the number of startups which have gone through the incubation process, the jobs they have created and their current valuation. Considering the booming startup culture in Pakistan, SXSW invited Dr. Umar Saif to speak at SXSW. The session was concluded by interactive session with audience.    SXSW has dedicated segments for music, film, startups and interactive industry and various sessions in the week long moot. Many prominent individuals like Barrack Obama, Mark Cuban, Sean Read, Kesha etc participate in this event.

 


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