PM Imran underlines mobile operators’ role in economic growth

ISLAMABAD: Mobile operators play a key role in the economic growth of any country by bringing in foreign investment, fostering connectivity, and enabling other sectors to thrive, Prime Minister Imran Khan said on Wednesday.

“The government has launched the ‘Digital Pakistan’ initiative to provide a platform to the youth and it is heartening to see private sector companies like Jazz carry the mantle,” the prime minister said during a meeting with VEON Group CEO Kaan Terzioglu.

The Dutch telecom and internet service provider VEON operates in Pakistan through its subsidiary Jazz that has the largest number of 34.2 million 4G users in country and a total customer base of 71.9m.

The PM was informed that investments by Jazz in Pakistan has crossed $10 billion including $560m in the last two years on 4G network expansion.

Mr Terzioglu highlighted that the group is committed to initiatives in Pakistan that empower the youth with digital tools and resources. He reiterated VEON Group’s full support towards the government’s Digital Pakistan initiative and talked about the role Jazz is playing in improving digital infrastructure, enhancing connectivity, investing in digital skills and literacy, promoting entrepreneurship and innovation, and driving financial inclusion through JazzCash.

VEON, a leading global provider of connectivity and internet services, is embarking on a journey to be a world-leading digital operator with over 213.8 million subscribers in nine countries, he said. “Pakistan is a key market for VEON, and we see tremendous growth potential as the country continues to implement its ‘Digital Pakistan’ vision,” Mr Terzioglu added.

To promote the Digital Pakistan vision and encourage private sector investment in broadband connectivity and network expansion, a forward-looking regulatory regime is needed that has to be in line with next-generation connectivity requirements, he urged.

Meanwhile, Jazz CEO Aamir Ibrahim said that by utilising the leadership position and global expertise, Jazz is focused on creating a flourishing digital ecosystem in Pakistan, by constantly investing in expanding access to 4G to rural and semi-urban areas.

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