Prime minister says wide coverage of internet necessary to utilize the full potential of country’s youth
Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday directed officials concerned with ensuring provision of internet facilities with widespread coverage in Pakistan’s remote areas, especially Balochistan, the areas formerly known as FATA, and Sindh.
Presiding over a meeting in Islamabad on enhancing and improving Pakistan’s internet coverage, he said unhindered internet access was needed to properly utilize the full potential of youth. He said that without adequate internet access, the younger generations would struggle with accessing educational content, and stressed that it should be easily available to for maximum benefit.
The prime minister directed the Universal Service Fund to take necessary measures for the provision of cheap and easy internet in schools. He also ordered the formation of a committee led by the adviser to the P.M. on finance, and including the ministers for industries and production, planning, information technology, and education so they could provide recommendations for achieving this goal.
During the meeting, the Universal Service Fund briefed the prime minister on ongoing projects for internet services in the country’s remote areas, as well its efforts to improve coverage in the past two years and its targets for this year. He was also briefed on progress of various projects for providing and increasing the coverage of internet facilities across the country.
According to the officials, 1,800 kilometers of optic fiber cables had been laid in various areas of Balochistan and Khyber-Pakhtunkwha during the past two years, while another 4,600 kilometers would be laid in 547 union councils this year.
In addition to the prime minister, Information Technology Minister Syed Ameenul Haq, Education Minister Shafqat Mehmood, the federal secretary for information technology, the chairman of the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority, the chief executive officer of the Universal Service Fund, and other officials concerned attended the meeting.