By Rafiq Vayani
DUBAI: An engaging panel discussion on how government in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is leading amongst all other provinces towards progressive regulatory framework for Online Marketplaces such as Careem was held in its headquarters in Dubai.
The renowned panel included Taimur Jhagra, Minister Finance, KP and Senior Leaders from Careem including Mudassir Sheikha, Co- Founder and CEO, Junaid Iqbal, MD Careem Pay and Zeeshan Hasib Baig, General Manager Pakistan.
The discussion revolved around recent progressive fiscal measures taken by the Finance Minister and KP’s cabinet for understanding the business model of Online Marketplace platforms which have an immense potential to create jobs in Pakistan.
The province of KP despite facing the repercussions of the ‘War on Terror’ for over a decade, has been extremely progressive in introducing the most favourable regulatory framework for the industry out of the four provinces through the introduction of a subcategory of ride-hailing and a minimal tax rate of 2 percent on platform’s share giving exemptions to Independent Service providers such as Captains. This has allowed for unhampered growth of the industry in KP with the creation of thousands of new jobs, attracting further investment in the province.
The Minister presented his vision for KP to recognize it as the province that leapfrogs the country into the digital future by creating an environment that encourages the use of technology to improve lives.
The Minister also took questions from the Captains in Dubai, as a significant number of them comprises overseas Pakistanis who wished to return to their homeland. Reassuring them that the Government is taking all possible steps to assist Pakistanis abroad including a facilitation desk at the Careem Office in Dubai that will help find income opportunities for Captains wanting to move to Pakistan.
Addressing the Captains and senior leadership, Provincial Minister for Finance commented: “Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is committed to take the lead in developing favourable policies to encourage innovation in the province. By introducing the progressive regulatory framework for Online Marketplaces and ride-hailing platforms, we have laid the foundation for an enabling business environment that will lead us to increased economic activity along with increased job opportunities.”
Commenting on the occasion Mudassir Sheikha, Co-Founder and CEO of Careem said: “Technology is playing a key role in the creation of economic opportunity in Pakistan. Careem is passionately committed to bringing innovative technology solutions to the country and creating income opportunities through the shared economy.”
Careem is also working on another project in collaboration with the Government of KP to bring Rescue 1122 Ambulance Services in Peshawar on the Careem platform to improve the ambulance response time in the city and ensure that precious lives can be saved.