Initially, Islamabad, Punjab, Balochistan, Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and Gilgit-Baltistan will each have one Smart Village.
Through the Universal Service Fund (USF), the Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunications (MOIT&T) initiated a “Smart Village” project in four provinces, including Islamabad and Gilgit-Baltistan.
The International Telecommunication Union and Huawei Technologies Pakistan will fund and support the project technically. The project will establish a centre outfitted with modern amenities in a backward hamlet, where residents will be trained to use the amenities and encouraged to adopt them into their everyday lives.
Syed Amin Ul Haque, Federal Minister for Information Technology and Telecommunications, inaugurated the ceremony on Wednesday alongside Federal Secretary for Information Technology and Telecommunications, Muhammad Sohail Rajput, CEO USF, Haaris Mahmood Chaudhary, Area Representative for Southeast Asia International Telecommunication Union (ITU), Dr. Ismail Shah, and Huawei CEO, Mark Meng.
Haque addressed the occasion as follows:
“The Smart Village initiative is another step toward achieving Prime Minister Imran Khan’s vision of a Digital Pakistan. MOIT&T, in collaboration with ITU and Huawei, is transforming distant and rural communities digitally by connecting and enabling them to a range of digital services in the domains of health, education, commerce, and livelihood. The initiative places a premium on a whole-of-government approach and encourages cross-sector collaboration and multi-stakeholder involvement in order to further increase cost-effectiveness and resource sharing in delivering services to residents. Initially, each of Islamabad, Punjab, Balochistan, Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and Gilgit-Baltistan would have one Smart Village.”
According to the Federal Minister, the National Information Technology Board (NITB) has created over 30 mobile applications, government web portals, and public sector websites.
The general public can only profit from these applications if they have access to them. He stated that the results of the Digital Pakistan Vision’s initiatives are now becoming visible. We have established the first E-cabinet, which is tasked with the responsibility of developing E-Parliament, E-Office, and Internet Voting.
The Federal Minister praised the USF, ITU, and Huawei teams and pledged his support for the project’s implementation. Additionally, he stated that the Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunications would continue to pursue more demanding and fruitful programmes in the future to promote information technology and telecommunications-related services.
Haaris Mahmood Chaudhary, CEO of USF, stated during the ceremony, “The Smart Village project is consistent with USF’s mission to empower underserved and unserved communities.” This collaboration will enable USF, ITU, and Huawei to work cooperatively to accomplish their missions.”