The National Science and Technology Park (NSTP) SEZ Committee approved the entry of 23 new enterprises in its 2nd committee meeting.
After the launch of NSTP, Islamabad, as a Special Economic Zone (SEZ), its colonization began with the entry of R&D-based enterprises both local and foreign with 2 companies already been awarded with the Zone Enterprise Status in committee’s first meeting in December 2021.
Committee’s 2nd meeting chaired by AVM (Retd.) Dr Rizwan Riaz, Pro Rector (RIC) NUST and VP NSTP, with officials from federal and district administration in attendance was held on 27 June 2022 at NUST.
The applicants include foreign companies Birdy Ventures (Japan based) doing R&D in agriculture technologies, APIMatic (New Zealand based) in software interface development, Logreg (US) in digitalizing retail industry for contactless shopping, Software Productivity Strategists (US) in digital solution building, Vialogic (UK) in Digital Identity & Cyber Security solutions. Among the local companies Avionics Solutions (doing R&D in production of aircraft electronics systems) and Horizon Tech (in production of Highly secure Cyber Security products) are working on import substitutes.
Other local companies include NUST Holdings (a company of NUST to commercialize its R&D), Block360 (Financial & Blockchain technology), Vyro (image processing), Fides, AarSol and Evamp & Saanga (Digital Enterprise Solutions), PropSure and GISPlus Digitization & mapping of real estate industry in Pakistan, mimAR in Architectural Visualization using AR & VR, Zaytrics on prevention of Cyber Crimes using AI and ML, abcData in Investment platform for Pakistani market, AMT Electric in Smart Buildings Solutions, LearnObots in Education Technologies Development and Health Technologies companies Erays production of footwear for diabetic patients, Cognitive Healthcare International providing healthcare using wireless wearables medical devices and Xylexa providing solution for early detection of breast cancer.
All In all these companies will be investing more than 2.5 Billion PKR in Research & Development to production of their respective products/solutions. 1400+ Direct and indirect jobs have been created by these companies and will be adding $ 12 million in country export. The application for zone enterprise entry and allotment of land/offices were submitted and processed via SEZ’s MIS Module designed by the Federal Board of Investment.
The module ensures transparency and facilitation and works as one window operation, a vision of the government to ensure ease of doing business.Along with the allotment of land/offices, these enterprises are now entitled to SEZ’s benefits, including custom duties and tax exemption under the SEZ Act, 2012.
Award of the status will give import duty and income tax exemptions to these enterprises which will catalyse their transformation into a national and regional success, which in turn will uplift the socioeconomic environment for the masses by way of rapid production of disruptive technologies and will help improve the nation’s Global Innovation Index standing.
The National Science Technology Park is a project established by the National University of Science and Technology (NUST), that was awarded the SEZ status in 6th meeting of the Board of Approvals, held on 7th October 2020, under the chair of the prime minister.
The project is located inside the existing NUST Campus at H-12, Islamabad.The SEZ aims to catalyse economic activity in the country and develop a knowledge based multi-industry cluster including segments of the IT and telecommunications, engineering, biotech/bio-pharma, banking/financial services, defence technologies, power, and automotive industries.
The synergies will yield technology enhancement, development of efficient systems, resolve the issues of industry through research and development and production of goods and services compatible globally and beneficial to the national economy.
Chairman Board of Investment, while appreciating the uniqueness of the SEZ, said that the propagation of hi-tech industry through R&D is need of the hour to bring the industrial base of Pakistan at par with the countries in the region.