Pakistan has not left India behind in software exports
By Areeba Fatima | 08 February 2021 | 6:56 AM
Claim: Pakistan experienced a 40% rise in software exports, leaving India behind.
On 6 February, Urdu News published an article on their website and shared it on Twitter with a misleading headline that read ” [translated] A 40% rise in Pakistan’s Software Exports, leaving India behind”.
Basic Fact Check found this article to be misleading because it implies that the 40% rise in Pakistan’s software exports has made it so that India has been left behind in terms of information and communications technology – which is measured according to this piece, through software exports.
According to the State Bank of Pakistan’s report on Export and Import Goods and Services, the value of exports in the sector of Telecommunications, Computer and Information services (IT enabled services) was valued at $684 million in the fiscal year 2020 from July to December. In the fiscal year 2021, from July to December, this sector was valued at $958 million. Just a brief calculation can confirm that this is a 40% increase in the software exports of the country.
However, it is important to understand what “leaving behind” implies. India’s IT industry exports are valued much higher than Pakistan and the industry is estimated to grow to US$ 350 billion by 2025.
India Brand Equity Foundation mentions on their website that the export revenue for the IT industry was estimated at $147 billion for the fiscal year 2020. This period of accounting income in India is from April 1 till March 31.
Federal Minister of IT and Telecommunication Syed Aminul Haque said, during the IT Export Awards 2019 ceremony organized by Pakistan Software Export Board (PSEB), that Pakistan has set a target of $5billion IT exports till 2023.
The News reports in December 2020 that Pakistan’s exports of IT and enabled-services are expected to reach $1.2 billion by the end of the fiscal year. This means that India’s export revenue for FY2020 was at least 122 times more than Pakistan’s.
Misinformation regarding the economic development of a country misleads the people into believing an illusion of progress which prevents civil society from engaging in critique of government policies.
Urdu News reported a 40% rise in Pakistan’s software exports, however they published an article further implying that this puts Pakistan ahead of India in the race for highest software exports. Basic Fact Check found this to be misleading. Pakistan has indeed experienced a 40% increase in terms of software exports but India’s export revenue in the comparative time period referred to in the article in check was 122 times more than Pakistan’s.
Basic Fact Check found this to be misleading. Pakistan has indeed experienced a 40% increase in terms of software exports but India’s export revenue in the comparative time period referred to in the article in check was 122 times more than Pakistan’s.