Pakistani freelancers attracted export remittances of nearly $400 million in the closing financial year 2021-2022 by providing various services online to foreign clients in different countries.
According to the official data released by the Ministry of IT and Telecommunication (MoITT), the remittances inflows in the closing financial year stood at $397.328 million as compared to $396.243 million recorded in the previous financial year 2020-21, showing a modest growth of 2.74% year-on-year.
The contribution of the freelancers accounted for 14.77% of the total ICT export remittances of $2.616 billion recorded by the country during FY22.
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Tufail Ahmed Khan, ,CEO Pakistan Freelancers Association said the contribution of the freelancers to attract export remittances has been impressive in Pakistan considering the issues and challenges faced by the fraternity.
Freelancers in Pakistan have maintained their good reputation on the renowned freelancing platforms however they do have immense scope to enhance their contribution to export remittances, he added.
In Pakistan, freelancers should utilize the available bank account services through major local banks to avoid significant deductions of their earnings on multiple channels. Besides, new people should subscribe to freelancing platforms for making money and supporting their country alike, Khan further added.
The export remittances of IT services declined to $265 million in FY22 as compared to $363 million reported in FY21. IT services included web development, logo design, graphic designing, mobile app developers, java developers, etc.
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On the other hand, the export remittances from non-IT services surged to $131 million in FY from $33 million reported in FY21. Content writing, translation, virtual assistantship, sales, marketing, account, finance, customers’ services are the major areas of non-IT freelance services.
In the outgoing year, freelancers were also imposed charges through banks on each transaction of income remittances which not only reduce their earnings but also discourage their passion to make money online from foreign clients.
According to estimates, there are nearly 3 million freelancers in Pakistan which put the country among to 5 countries for providing freelance services.
Recently, an association was formed to support freelancers in Pakistan including its resolution of their issues and creating awareness about the opportunities they could avail of. Also, various events were organized to promote freelancing in Pakistan in major cities in recent months.
The concerned ministry is also working on the draft of the National Freelancing Policy aimed at creating facilities for freelancers in Pakistan including capacity building programs of various fields.
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