According to the UNDP Report, youth make up 36.9 percent of Pakistan’s total labor force: there are presently more people of working age (15 to 64) than those who are elderly (65+) or younger (15). According to the same report, nearly four million young people reach working age each year, compared to one million new positions created yearly.
As a means of investment, employment creation, and economic growth, there is a developing interest in entrepreneurship, particularly within the development sector. In 2020, when the economy was declining, 77 million dollars were invested in Pakistani startups, whereas eight months into 2021, investments in Pakistani startups surpassed $228 million.
According to a report by UNICEF, the number of freelancers in Pakistan has increased by 42% since 2018. Since 2012, 720 new businesses have been founded. Youth are eager to succeed as entrepreneurs. Many new entrepreneurs need more capital and guidance.
The first National Incubation Center was established in Islamabad in 2016. NIC Pakistan is the first of its kind; it was created to advance the vision of a Digital Pakistan and was funded by Ignite – National Technology Fund.
In 2018, the government demonstrated its support for the country’s entrepreneurial ecosystem. First, the Kamyab Jawan (Successful Youth) and Kamyab Pakistan (Successful Pakistan) initiatives offer aspiring entrepreneurs low-interest loans. Second, funding and support for university incubators and national incubation centers in the country have increased. Finally, the State Bank of Pakistan has loosened some regulations to make it easier for entrepreneurs to obtain financing.
According to CREDP, the present growth rates in Pakistan need to be improved to generate employment opportunities that cater to the increasing number of young individuals joining the labor market annually. The significance of entrepreneurship lies in its potential to address the disparities between the demand for employment opportunities and the availability of jobs. Establishing a regulatory framework that is more conducive to the growth of entrepreneurship is imperative. To enable the youth to engage in the digital economy, augmenting their skill set through a more technically-focused university education is imperative. Furthermore, the government must broaden the availability of financial resources and offer mentorship to support fledgling business owners.
It is time to envision a future where higher education is not just a privilege for a few but a catalyst for national progress and