National ICT R&D Fund Board reviews implementation of policy measures

ISLAMABAD (Staff Reporter): The Policy Board of the National ICT R&D Fund, funding entity of the Ignite Co, Tuesday reviewed implementation of different policy measures under implementation with Ignite Co. The meeting was held in the chair of Anusha Rahman, Minister of State for IT and Telecom, which discussed progress on launching DigiSkills initiative to train one million youth to promote excellence in technology, innovation and work ethic, building a workforce for a future driven by the 4th Industrial Wave. Anusha Rahman said, “Our educational institutes are producing a large number of graduates and it is important that they are well-prepared for employment in new technologies in line with fast growing requirement trends of 4th industrial revolution. In our flagship Digiskills programme is aimed to train our youth using targeted and customised online and modular course content so that our youth can tap freelance work portals and earn sitting at home. In the Digiskills programme the target is to train one million youth in its first phase and to incrementally grow the user base as well.

CEO Ignite Yousaf Hassan apprised the forum that in compliance with the board directives, ten new modules, including required training for online journalism, have been designed to train in non-IT skills. Anusha Rehman directed the CEO Ignite to make a proposal to further scale up the PM Internship programme in the next board meeting. Minister also chaired Annual General Meeting (AGM) of Telephone Industry of Pakistan (TIP).

 Zong establishes 4G research lab at LUMS

Lahore (Staff Reporter): As part of its efforts at transforming country’s digital landscape, Zong has inaugurated its 4G Wireless Research Lab at the Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS). The state-of-the-art facility will provide students of Pakistan’s top-ranked university the opportunity to advance their academic endeavors along latest technological lines, greatly enhancing the school’s learning and research capabilities. The Zong 4G Research Lab comprises of latest broadband wireless equipment, including a commercial base station to support teaching and research into mobile and wireless networking systems. This includes a fully functioning separate 4G network along with exclusive SIMs that connect via the dedicated network. In addition to supporting academic research, the Zong 4G Research Lab will also serve as a one-of-a-kind hub for innovation, greatly contributing to the promotion of start-ups arising from the university’s National Incubation Centre. 

By coupling state of the art technology with Zong 4G’s super-fast network capabilities, the aim of this partnership is to help provide a joint platform to support some of the most promising ideas and solutions on the horizon of Pakistan’s fast changing digital landscape. As the pioneer 4G network in Pakistan, the company has been at the forefront of leading Pakistan’s data revolution from the ground-up, enabling students and young entrepreneurs.

 PM chairs meeting of Cabinet

Committee on Energy

ISLAMABAD (Staff Reporter): Cabinet Committee on Energy (CCoE) Tuesday reviewed various power sector development projects which are being set up to diversify the existing energy mix of the country including wind, solar and hydel power projects. The meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Energy was held here at Prime Minister’s Office and was chaired by PM Shahid Khaqan Abbasi. Minister for Power Sardar Awais Ahmed Khan Leghari, Minsiter of State (MOS) for Petroleum Jam Kamal Khan, secretaries of concerned divisions, Managing Director (MD) Pakistan State Oil (PSO) and senior officials of the concerned ministries and divisions attended the meeting. The meeting also discussed threadbare various policies including power co-generation by sugar industry and the renewable energy policy 2006, said a press statement issued here. It was decided to introduce suitable amendments in the existing policy framework in order to address various issues relating to power tariff.

The Minister for Power would a hold press briefing today (Wednesday) regarding the policy decisions taken during the meeting.

 20 power grid stations worth Rs.25b

completed in four years

LAHORE (Staff Reporter): The government has completed 20 power grid stations with a cost of Rs25 billion, during last four years, enhancing electricity generation capacity by 8,500MW. This was stated by State Minister for Water Division Abid Sher Ali while talking to the media here at an open ‘katchery’ to resolve complaints of power consumers. He said that another 4000 MW would be added to the system by March 2018. He said that when PML-N took over the government, loadshedding duration was then up to 20 hours but now there is zero loadshedding on 95 percent of the country’s grid stations. The state minister listened thoroughly to the power consumers’ problems and issued on the spot directives to authorities concerned. He said that such open kutchery would also be held in various parts of the country including Gujranwala, Jehlum and Peshawar, assuring that DISCOs (power distribution companies) would definitely address every unjust step against their respective consumers.

 He said that he would pay surprise visits to various circle of the DISCOs to check their service delivery.

He said the past corrupt rulers plundered the national exchequer and ruined the institutions and it is always the PML-N government that streamlined the affairs of the state to put it on path to speedy development.

For instance, he said, in its past four years, the present PML-N government has enhanced the country’s electricity generation capacity to the proportional which could not be generated even earlier 70 years of Pakistan’s inception.

Abid Sher Ali said that PML-N government has pulled the country out of darkness of load-shedding, and we will also pull KPK from darkness to light by ending energy crisis.

Regarding over-billing, the Minister of State assured that respective staff would be held responsible if found involved in this practice, adding that those earning bad name to the department would face departmental action at all costs.