top of page

Digital Pakistan – Securing and Optimising Pakistan’s Digital Ecosystem

A statement from Pakistan’s Ministry for ICT and Telecommunications

The current revolution in information and communications technology, will lead to a convergence of technologies producing a range of benefits for the citizens of Pakistan. Simultaneous advances in the fields of AI, data analytics, biotechnology, 3D printing, advanced materials and manufacturing, 5G connectivity and nano technology, will create a digital synergy to drive Pakistan’s economy and society forward. The use of these emerging technologies will see farms, factories and smart cities run by AI enabled Internet of Things tech, powered by superfast AI.

The Government of Pakistan strives to improve its citizens’ quality of life and economic well-being by ensuring availability of secure, accessible, affordable, reliable, universal, and high-quality ICT services. Pakistan strongly believes in mass adoption of emerging digital technologies and innovative applications to enable cross-sector socio-economic development and transformation of economic activities, governance models, and achievement of sustainable development goals. To this end, our Digital Pakistan Policy, launched in 2021, is to become a strategic enabler for the accelerated digitization of our tech eco-system in order to expand the knowledge- based economy and spur socio-economic growth. The core planks of this policy are outlined below.

Internet of Things, Fintech, Artificial intelligence & Robotics

The Digital Pakistan Policy aims to establish specialised innovation centres in Fintech, AI, IoT and Robotics in the major cities of Pakistan. This to promote indigenous production and expertise in these fields by creating a highly integrated start-up eco-system based on collaboration with national and international incubation centres, financial institutions, universities and governments. Alongside this, the policy seeks to devise appropriate capacity and awareness building measures to promote the use of smart technologies. These measures include, awareness campaigns, trainings, seminars and workshops. Targeted investment will also be used to accelerate advancement in these areas, both through federal funding streams and impactful public-private partnerships. The government will also collaborate with higher education institutions and the IT industry alongside other relevant institutions to modernise the education curriculum to be in sync with emerging technologies and align programmes to the requirements of industry.

Cloud Computing and Big Data

Cloud Computing and Big Data technology are central parts of the Digital Pakistan Policy. To maximise effectiveness in these fields the federal government will integrate its distributed databases to enable data mining and analysis at scale through the establishment of state-of-the-art national level data centres. This will enhance the quality of e-Government services through real time integrated management and advanced data analytics. At the same time, we will discourage the establishment of siloed IT infrastructure across different government departments in order to mitigate duplication of efforts and operational expenses. The removal of legal and administrative barriers to the exchange of data for citizen-oriented services will be prioritised.

Simultaneously, the government of Pakistan will seek to provide a common infrastructure platform for public and private sector organisations, in order to stimulate the development and implementation of citizen-centric mobile applications to improve communication between government and citizens. To prioritize Cloud adoption, Government of Pakistan is in the process of finalizing Pakistan Cloud first policy. To facilitate cloud adoption, Pakistan is inviting businesses to join us in building quality cloud infrastructure.

Data Protection

It is impossible for any society to become adequately digitally enabled without making provisions to ensure the safety of citizens data, via both technology and appropriate data protection law. The Digital Pakistan Policy aims to deliver the privacy of citizens through Personal Data Protection Bill, which governs the collection, processing, use and disclosure of personal data. It also establishes provisions concerning offenses related to data privacy violations. The objective of the bill is to protect the data of Pakistani citizens and prevent unauthorized leakage of personal data.

Data underpins many of the technologies that are powering Pakistan’s digital revolution. For AI based technologies to function accurately, one of the most important requirements is access to large amounts of data. Due to this, it comes as no surprise that AI based platforms collect large amounts of user’s personal data. The solution to privacy issues in AI enabled devices likely lies with consumers, who will be able to hold producers responsible for the data they collect and remain vigilant concerning the data they relinquish. The Government of Pakistan prepared the initial draft of the bill under the auspices of The Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication. The Initial draft of the bill is on the Ministry’s website for consultation and is in the process of finalisation.

Cyber Security

Advances in the Internet of Things and other potentially autonomous systems present new cyber security challenges. The severity of such cyber threats is magnified as societies are becoming more and more dependent on emerging technologies. To mitigate the cyber threats that Pakistan faces today, it is imperative to undertake the strengthening of national cyber security. Security standards must be implemented and policy, regulatory and legislative frameworks put in place. To this end Pakistan’s National Cyber Security Policy has been approved by the Federal Cabinet. The new policy aims to support both public and private sector bodies, including critical national infrastructure, and helping to centralise and standardise ICT security across all institutions.


The Digital Pakistan Policy is designed to harness the many benefits of the revolution in digital technologies for the betterment of Pakistan. However, security concerns must be at the core of any policy aimed at incubating technology. Protection of data and cybersecurity are core elements of the Digital Pakistan Policy, and the Government of Pakistan is committed to producing such secure infrastructures.


Submitted as a contribution to the Emerging Technology Insight 2021


bottom of page