ISLAMABAD – A delegation comprising of representatives from governments of Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan paid visit to Higher Education Commission (HEC) to understand the developments in higher education sector.

The main objective of the visit was to understand the working of HEC and developments during last few years. Executive director HEC, Prof Dr S Sohail H Naqvi welcomed the delegation and apprised them about the working, functions and role of HEC for strengthening higher education sector in Pakistan.

He informed that the establishment of the HEC in 2002 has heralded a revolution in higher education in Pakistan; the HEC has accomplished more in nine years since its establishment than was achieved in the first 55 years.

Research output has grown eight-folds since 2002 (from 815 in 2002 to 6,200 in 2011). 80 percent of these research publications from Pakistan are coming from HEIs. Output has more than doubled just again in the next 3 years.

Pakistan today is a regional leader in ICTs, which other countries are following.  The Digital Library provides access to 75 percent of the World’s literature (23,000 e-journals and 45,000 e-books).

He also informed that due to revolutionary reforms in the sector, Pakistani universities have been included among the top world and Asian universities and Pakistani higher education model is being followed by other Asian countries.

He also highlighted the development strategy of HEC and various steps undertaken to improve quality of teaching and research, equitable access to higher education, university industry and community linkages and human resource development in Pakistan. The delegation appreciated the role of HEC in brining vibrant and effective changes in the higher education sector of Pakistan and showed keen interest for collaboration with HEC and Pakistani higher education institutions.

They also acknowledged that the best international practices in the sector of higher education. The delegation also visited Quaid-i-Azam University (QAU) and

National University Science and Technology (NUST) and attended the presentations about these two leading universities.

The delegation was led by Sardarbekov, Deputy Governor of Naryn Oblast, The Kyrgyz Republic and Farkhod Rakhimov, First Deputy Minister, Ministry of Education Tajikistan. Shamsh Kassim Lakha, Former federal Minister of Science and Technology and Asadullah Sumbal Senior Economist Asian Development Bank along with senior officials of University of Central Asia accompanied the delegation.