Is Pakistan a lucrative opportunity for IT businesses?

With a market of 220 million people and growing local capital, Pakistan offers significant potential for technological entrepreneurs. According to a study published by Deutsche Welle on Wednesday, Pakistan may be Asia’s next major tech startup market.

Pakistan’s young population and increasing levels of local capital, according to DW, are providing opportunities for technology entrepreneurs to thrive in the Pakistani market. According to McKinsey & Company’s most recent study on Pakistan’s ecosystem, Pakistan has been recognized as one of Asia’s fastest-growing economies.

According to a report from DW, since 2010, 720 new businesses have been launched in the country — 67 percent of which are still active.

The article by DW, which was published on August 31, 2019, reported that Egyptian ride-hailing firm Swvl has recently announced plans to invest $25 million in Pakistan’s tech sector over the next two years to nurture pre-seed firms and create 10,000 jobs.

“The startup industry is crucial to the government’s plans for promoting entrepreneurship and economic development, according to a report by Global Entrepreneurship Network (GEN). Pakistan passed six changes in the latter half of 2019 intended to create a better environment for technology-based businesses in the country.”

According to the Financial Times, “the government has proposed several initiatives to ease the regulatory context for companies, including extending the three-year tax relief and establishing an online one-stop registration system, allowing firms to be incorporated in 17 days instead of 20 at a reduced cost of 1.1 percent.”

According to DW, Pakistan’s rank improved in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business report from 136th place in 2018 to 108th place in 2019.

While noting that startups in Pakistan raised $18.8 million in investment last year, the note added: “more money is anticipated to flow into startups from overseas in the years ahead.”

The Digital Pakistan initiative, which was announced by authorities in December 2019, has also been well received. Tania Aidrus, a former Google executive, is the leader of the project and has outlined a goal to improve access and connectivity, increase digital education, and usher in a new era of e-governance in Pakistan.

According to The Content Architects’ founder, Hina Husain, Pakistan’s technology ecosystem has been gradually gaining steam in recent years. It has a strong tech talent pool and is still reasonably affordable, making it ideal for early-stage entrepreneurs like myself,” she was quoted by DW as remarking. According to Hena, the Karachi tech market is exploding by the day. The Content Architects collaborate with a Karachi-based development team.

According to DW, increased confidence in Pakistan’s technology sector has resulted in more local investment.

While Pakistan’s startup scene and venture capital market are still developing, the number of funds, such as i2i Ventures and Fatima Gobi Ventures, as well as active angel investors has grown significantly since 2018, according to DW.

According to Iskander Pataudi, a Pakistani-born technology worker who now works in Berlin, the tech sector in Pakistan developed naturally.

According to Tarek, “a few Pakistani technological businesses” have recently raised “large cash injections” while our economy is simply keeping its head above water. This makes sense because we have a significant market of young, digitally-savvy customers with increased 3G and 4G availability, after all.”

According to DW, a series of startup success stories, as well as a more secure political situation under President Imran Khan, has boosted “investors’ confidence that Pakistan has huge potential for exiting enterprises.”

According to DW, Pakistanis living abroad are beginning to believe that new opportunities are emerging back home.

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