Pakistan shortlisted for Early 5G Rollout

BEIJING, August 26 (INP): The recently conducted 5G network trials by China Mobile subsidiary in Pakistan known as Zong (CMPak) has put Pakistan on the list of the first few countries in the world in line for an upgrade to the next generation of cellular communication network technology.

This continues the trend for CMPak to be a pioneer in the communications technology sector in Pakistan, as it was the first to introduce 4G network technology in the country back in 2014 as well.

“This success marks an important milestone in Pakistan’s telecom sector,” said Zong CEO Wang Hua at an event in Islamabad held to conduct the test. “5G will herald a new era in Pakistan’s social and economic sectors.”

With Pakistan already the location where the flagship portion of the Belt and Road Initiative, the China Pakistan Economic Corridor is set, the impending launch of 5G would provide a massive boon to critical communication infrastructure that would enable tapping the potential afforded by the massive development undertakings of CPEC.

Technologies such as 5G hold great potential for countries such as Pakistan, which have been included in the N-11 list in a research paper by Goldman-Sachs. The N-11 is a list of 11 countries that are believed to hold immense potential for economic development and are economies to watch out for in the near future.

Pakistan is a developing country with a semi-industrial base and has gaps in certain infrastructure that hinder its economic development and caps its potential. With advanced technologies like 5G, Pakistan can make use of the game-changing developments in the world of technology such as artificial intelligence (AI), big data, cloud computing, and the Internet of Things (IoT).

The implementation of these technologies is necessary in every aspect ranging from agriculture to education and security to modernize and streamline them. They stand to provide a much needed boost to development in Pakistan and also help the country to gear up for the exponential leap in economic activity that will be generated in the near future as more projects of CPEC and other sectors begin to come online and initiate operations.

At the moment, Pakistan suffers from certain unique and distinct problems that greatly inhibit its economic potential. These problems would otherwise require a monumental effort and unpopular and difficult decisions to resolve for a country where inefficiency, wastage and corruption cripple the operations of many public and private sector enterprises.

Furthermore, Pakistan saw an astounding 47% growth in earnings by freelancers this fiscal year, putting it at number 4 on the global rankings in terms of earnings by freelance work. A major portion of that work is made possible only due to the digital economy, and 5G can enable to Pakistan to further tap into the massive potential afforded by the burgeoning gig economy and remote working possibilities.

This will directly impact and improve the quality of life of the working age youth of the country in dire need of employment opportunities.

With the rise of the smartphone as a platform, the world also saw the rise of business models such as e-commerce, shared bikes, video streaming services, mobile gaming, content consumption, ride hailing, autonomous vehicle, drones and AI-optimized food delivery services that amounted to business in the trillions of dollars and the creation of an entirely new realm in the digital sphere.

On the back-end, this also generated massive amounts of useful data, optimization of businesses, reduction of losses, enhanced monitoring capabilities and the transformation of lifestyles and societies.

With an early launch of 5G, countries like Pakistan can gain a definitive and much needed leveling out of the playing field, allowing for accelerated tapping of latent potential and growth opportunities, writes Beijing-based special correspondent of China Economic Net.

INP/JAVED