National Broadband Policy

OliveLit experts formulated the Broadband policy of Pakistan for the Ministry of IT&T, Government of Pakistan in 2005. Personal initiative on part of the experts during an official visit to South Korea in 2004 led to exploration of the reasons for Korea’s remarkably high Broadband penetration. Following detailed discussions with the officials of the Korean Ministry, South Korea Telecom and then the people and business stakeholders on the streets of Seoul, our experts worked out a way forward for Broadband proliferation in Pakistan, which was subsequently presented to the Pakistan IT minister and other high officials of the industry. On conclusion, the Minister assigned the experts the responsibility for formulating a Broadband policy that would spread the ‘broadband reach’ across the country. A small team of other IT and telecom experts was also constituted by the Minister to assist the experts for preparation of the Policy. Following detailed deliberations with all the stakeholders of the country, the policy was formulated and subsequently approved by the Prime Minister’s cabinet in 2005. Following its issuance, the users- which had previously been only around 30 thousand, built up over 3 years – grew to over 1 million over the next 5 years. Starting with steep reduction of the prohibitive bandwidth prices, all barriers to entry were removed. Despite some policy initiatives not being implemented at the government level, the ‘barriers free’ policy opened up the market for both, technologies as well as companies, leading to the exceptional growth rates, making Pakistan one of the fastest growing Broadband countries in  the process.