Pakistan has become one of the fastest-growing tech hubs in the world, leveraging its cheap Internet and high population. Arzish Azam believes that the South Asian country must take the lead in blockchain adoption as well. Speaking to CoinGeek Backstage, the Ejad Labs CEO shared Pakistan’s ambitions of global domination with its National Blockchain Strategy.
Azam revealed that the strategy was conceptualized after a Bitcoin SV (BSV) delegation met the country’s president earlier this year. The delegation, led by BSV advocate Jimmy Nguyen and InvoiceMate’s Muhammad Anjum, educated President Arif Alvi and his leadership about blockchain and how it could transform the country. By the end of the meeting, Dr. Alvi was convinced that Pakistan must invest in and explore blockchain.
Thus, the National Blockchain Strategy was born.
“It’s still a work in progress, but we feel there’s so much potential in the country.”
With a population of 230 million people, Pakistan is the world’s fifth-most populous country. Azam believes this is the country’s main strength as it has one of the biggest global domestic markets. Additionally, the country’s tech ecosystem is quite advanced, with many multinational firms, including those in the United States, the United Kingdom, and China relying on Pakistani developers to build their products.
Azam, whose startup incubates and supports local entrepreneurs and innovators, acknowledged that blockchain’s association with ‘crypto’ has limited adoption and regulations. One of his biggest tasks has been educating regulators and government officials about the utility of blockchain as a technology, away from speculation.
Azam has been working with the government for years now. However, earlier this year, most of the officials he had worked with left their positions when the new government took office led by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif. While there were concerns that most of the milestones achieved under the previous regime would be undone, Azam told CoinGeek Backstage that the new government has been quite supportive.
“The new government has announced that it will not roll back any initiative that deals with IT. Even the new government understands that for the economic progress of the country, IT is the one sector everyone needs to support. IT, blockchain, and startups are all quite sorted in terms of government support.”
Watch: The BSV Global Blockchain Convention panel, Blockchain in Middle East & South Asia
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