In order to realize the dream of establishing homegrown unicorn startups, experts in Pakistan believe that the country can learn a lot from Indonesia while cooperating with them to promote digital economy.
The experts made this observation during a recent webinar, titled “Indonesia-Pakistan IT Update: The Development and Challenges,” held by the Indonesian Consulate General, Dr. June Kuncoro Hadiningrat.
The webinar highlighted the robust startup culture in Indonesia as it has so far cultivated six unicorns and one decacorn, allowing Pakistan to learn from its fellow Asian country. Pakistan itself has received record seed fundings for startups this year.
Both Pakistan and Indonesia can develop valuable cooperation to promote digital economies, said the Chairman of Pakistan Software Houses Association ([email protected]), Badar Khushnood.
“Pakistan has a lot to learn from Indonesia, though both can collaborate as Pakistan has its own merits to offer,” he emphasized.
Indonesia Consul General Dr June Kuncoro Hadiningrat said that the Karachi consulate has organized meetings with the business communities in the Sindh province and found the information technology sector to have the potential to boost bilateral economic relations.
Before COVID, both countries’ IT sectors grew rapidly, with Pakistan’s rising by more than 14 percent and Indonesia’s expanding by more than 11 percent. In addition, each country’s IT industry employs a large number of specialists, with Pakistan and Indonesia employing 500,000 and 894,000 IT workers, respectively.
Pakistan boasts the world’s fourth-largest IT freelancing business, with a customer base in countries such as the United States, Canada, Europe, and the United Kingdom. Similarly, Indonesia has been home to multiple unicorn firms backed by investors from China, Japan, and the United States.
Also present in the webinar, the Managing Director of Pakistan Software Export Board (PSEB), Osman Nasir, expressed that the IT sector has witnessed a tremendous expansion in the country. However, there are a lot of growth opportunities as the supply is yet to meet the demands.
He added that, annually, around 25,000 IT graduates enter the job market, but the sector needs 60,000 to 70,000 skilled IT professionals.