ISLAMABAD – Finance Minister Ishaq Dar has said that the government is committed to enhancing digital inclusion in Pakistan, as it has announced several incentives for the IT industry in the budget for FY 2017-18 which the IT industry will start availing from July 2017 onwards.

He was speaking to a ceremony in which technology neutral license for 10 MHz of frequency spectrum 1800 MHz was handed over to the successful bidder, Jazz Pakistan, on Friday.

He said that the auction has been conducted in a fair and transparent, in accordance with global best practices.

On the occasion, the Minister of State for IT & Telecom Anusha Rehman said that the Ministry of IT & Telecom has conducted 3 spectrum auctions in the last 3 years, which is unprecedented. She appreciated the significant role played by Jazz in the telecom sector of Pakistan.

She said that broadband penetration has increased phenomenally, and broadband penetration, which was less than 3% in 2013, has grown to more than 29%. She said that the new 4G license awarded to Jazz will further enable provision of high-speed connectivity and the associated socio-economic benefits to the citizens of Pakistan.

The newly awarded license will enable Jazz to launch 4G Services in Pakistan, making Jazz the third 4G operator in the country. The successful bidder has submitted the entire license fee of US$ 295 million.-Online