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Punjab becomes first Pakistani province to move towards Web 3.0

LAHORE – A special web portal (web3.punjab.gov.pk/) was launched on Monday for the registration of Web 3.0 contributors including researchers, scientists and IT industry experts. National and international companies working with Web 3.0 technology will also be able to submit their valuable feedback through the portal.

The portal was launched during the first meeting of the high-powered committee constituted by Punjab Chief Minister (CM) Chaudhry Parvez Elahi on Adoption of Web 3.0 in the province. The meeting, held at Arfa Software Technology Park (ASTP), was presided by Punjab Finance Minister Mohsin Leghari and Punjab Information Technology (IT) Minister Dr. Arslan Khalid.

The distinguished members of the committee including PITB Chairman Syed Bilal Haider, Policy and Domain Expert Dr. Hussain Nadim, ICT Industry Experts including Anooshay Shaigan, Sabina Zafar, Badar Khushnood and Faisal Chaudhry were present in the meeting. Others included NetSol CEO Salim Ghauri, Systems CEO Asif Pir, Techlogix CEO Salman Akhtar, STEPS CEO Umar Farooq, P@SHA Chairman Zohaib Khan, ITU VC Dr. Sarfraz Khurshid, representatives from SBP, NBP, BOP, FBR, SECP and PITB DG e-Governance Sajid Latif.

Expressing his views on the occasion, Punjab Finance Minister Mohsin Leghari said that the complete adoption of Web 3.0 will create job opportunities leading to economic growth and rise in GDP. “Tourism, Education, Government services, Retail and Real Estate will be the main beneficiaries of the new technology,” he added.

Punjab IT Minister Dr. Arslan Khalid remarked that the technologies like Blockchain, Artificial Intelligence, Machine learning etc. are the backbone of Web 3.0 and afford more personalization and security to internet users around the globe.

“Adoption of Web 3.0 in the province will facilitate more interactivity between different users and websites enabling them to access content from multiple sources at the same time, without having to leave the website they are surfing at any point in time,” he added.

PITB Chairman Syed Bilal Haider was very optimistic about the development and stated, “Web 3.0 will enable PITB to buy lounges in Metaverse to hold meetings/sign agreements. Citizens would be able to use Metaverse to interact with the government.” He further said that with the support of SBP in adopting the Web 3 ecosystem, payments could also be made in the form of NFTs.

PITB DG e-Governance Sajid Latif gave a comprehensive presentation on TORs, constitution of sub-committees, proposal for addition of co-opted members, tentative roadmap and a brief introduction of Web 3.0 portal.  

Under Web 3.0, avenues in ‘new economy’, ‘tech R&D’ will be explored and a pool of new talent will be created that can be part of the Web 3.0 ecosystem.

Web 3.0 is the third iteration of internet that combines technologies like Blockchain, Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR), Cloud, Edge, Internet of Things (IoT), Geolocation tech & 5G etc. The underlying Blockchain technology provides virtually foolproof data security.

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