Arfa Software Technology Park Lahore is built in the memory of youngest Microsoft engineer Arfa Karm. The modern era is the age of software and technology. For the development of IT, parks and institutions the government is taking serious steps. Information technology can be defined as the study of processing information with the help of computers and other telecommunication devices. Data processing or information processing involves storing, retrieving and sharing information by sending it to various places for the purpose of learning, researching, communicating, etc.
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Information technology help in creating, transmitting, processing, securing and exchanging data by using physical devices like smartphones, computers, tablets, laptops, etc. information technology is a vast umbrella that contains web sites, servers, internet, intranet, software, databases, networks and telecommunication, all in its shed.
IT has helped in saving humanity from many hassles like selling products worldwide, engaging the international community through internet and computers rather than flying or travelling from a place to another, reducing the number of hours to get tasks done, facilitating by virtual existence of persons instead of physical presence, etc.
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Fields Linked with Information Technology and the role of Arfa Software Technology Park Lahore :
Information technology is linked with almost every field and profession in the emerging world. It has benefited almost every area of life, including health, finance, design, time and space, business, academic, investigative, etc.
Business massively applies information technology daily. No matter what the business is, it somehow has in it the capacity to employ. IT functions in its essential and operational performance. Cloud architecture is a way of elaborating, explaining and illustrating problem-solving in business. It shows the components and factors causing problems hence helping to sort things out. For example, in the current scenario of lock down due to Corona virus information technology is helping many firms and companies to keep their work in progress and providing essential services.
Modern Techniques of investigation in Pakistan and Arfa Software Technology Park Lahore:
Forensic investigators now apply information technology systems in order to carry their crime investigations. They gather information on trial evidence by using IT techniques and solve cases related to cyber and security crimes.
Role of Information Technology in the Health Sector:
Health sector worldwide is using IT techniques for keeping records and tracks of patients, billing and accounts. However, they also design graphical models for research and learning purposes. IT these days help Pakistani hospitals in taking record of patients’ illnesses and ailments, and it becomes feasible for them to treat a patient following their medical history. Applications, like “Sehat Kahani” has been launched for easy online access to medical care.
Information technology has its vast relations with smartphone applications as smartphones are now capable of performing most of the tasks that were previously performed using personal computers. In this current digital era, smartphones software development is highly in demand for IT functions.
Information technology is also being used in engineering fields. Engineers, either civil, chemical, architects or software, massively use IT functions for performing their duties. They research and design models and analyzes its efficiency by connecting it with experts worldwide and conducting researches for new ideas based on the experiences of pasts.
Information Technology and Academic field:
IT has many uses in academic fields as students and teachers both use websites and internet quite excessively for academic researches, learning and teaching. Today many of the educational institutions use distance learning policy. The lectures and notes are delivered to students using different websites and emails. Similarly, software and web pages are designed to carry out exams and assessing the students’ capabilities and abilities. These days, amid corona virus lock down many of the Pakistani universities and colleges have started distance learning programs, and this is only made possible with the help of information technology.
Role of IT Parks and Towers in Country’s Development:
The concept of technology parks was introduced some 55 years from now. Information technology parks and towers play a vital role in gearing up the economy of a country. It provides small enterprises with a platform so that they can create a competitive environment for the prevalence of scientific knowledge and technological innovations. Furthermore, these towers lay opportunities for creating high tech jobs by creating educational and technological knowledge flow among educational institutions, industries and a state’s economy. The small firms that set up their working systems in such towers have good chances of surviving and blooming in future as they are turned into proper software houses and technological hubs other than those which are located outside these parks and towers. These parks also attract foreign investments and enable students to grow by starting their work in these grand infrastructures.
Information technology and software parks have contributed a lot in increasing Pakistan’s exports and decreasing the imports of computer software and software consultancy services. Moreover, such institutions help create many jobs which is crucial in the current era where a number of educated people are surpassing the number of jobs in the country. IT industry has also boosted the GDP of Pakistan and is getting better and better every year as the IT experts have begun to expand their services on both national and international levels. Pakistan’s IT professionals are now extending their skills and providing their services to almost all the economic and as well as domestic sectors of the country, including banks, hospitals, textile industry, etc.
Arfa Software Technology Park (ASTP) Lahore:
Arfa Software and Technology Park, initially known as Lahore Technology Park, located on Ferozepur Road, Lahore, was inaugurated on February 9, 2012. In 2014, it was named after Arfa Karim, Pakistan’s youngest Microsoft Certified Professional, who died in the age of 16. ASTP is owned by Pakistan Information Technology Board (PITB).
It is Pakistan’s largest IT hub, established in a 17 storey building, having a height of 106 meters which also involves an IT university. It also has six-storey integrated parking which has a capacity of 325 cars and 640 motorcycles. The building also includes a food court, medical clinic and gym facilities. The building is installed with an IP based Building Management System (BMS) which makes monitoring, managing and operating of the whole building optimized and centralized. For maintenance of heat, ventilation, humidity control and air cleaning. A high performing HVAC Digital Control System has been installed, which also saves energy.
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Arfa Software Technology Park (ASTP) Lahore IT Companies:
ASTP is the house of many software companies like;
- Microsoft Pakistan
- Dell Pakistan
- Software House
- Loxvo Technologies
- Tech Bridge Web Solutions
- TallyMarks Consulting
- IT Plugs
- Ultimo Tech Ltd
- House of Doyens
- Android Tiger
- Mubashir Hassan and Co.
- Arslan Ramay-Web Designer and Developer, Lahore
- Decoding Future
- ITD Pakistan (Pvt) Ltd.
- CFC Hall
- Design Studio
- Mian Haseeb Iqbal
- TECHNOLYSYS SOFTWARE SOLUTIONS
- SocialBu LLP
- VIION Technology
- Perfection Orbit Technology
- Fast Services
- The Game Storm Studios (Pvt) Ltd.
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It was made in order to make it easy for IT experts and Professional to carry out and provide their services to the country on a macro level. Due to the existence of such an enormous IT park, Pakistan has achieved a target of bringing all the needs of software firms under a single roof and facilitating the IT industry with a hassle-free work environment.
Arfa Software Technology Park (ASTP) Lahore and its Goals:
The main goal of the project of ASTP was to develop Pakistan’s IT sector and to generate revenue. The plan was to generate an approximate value of the export revenue and Foreign Direct Investment of Rs. 50 million, within a period of the first five years.
However, It was considered that building structures like ATSP will provide better facilitation for conducting research and development, improved telecommunication, expansion of technological knowledge and a better environment to attract local and foreign IT experts.
ASTP was build to increase the space of accommodation for IT offices and start-up firms. It also aims to promote the culture of entrepreneurship. It was designed to provide high-speed data communication services and other value-added services.
Achievements of the Arfa Software Technology Park (ASTP) Lahore:
Given below are some of the major achievements of Arfa Software Technology Park (ASTP) Lahore:
- Completion of Land Records Management and Information System Project (Phase-I)
- Completion of Technology Incubator Plan 9 and Plan X.
- Completion of driving license management information system.
- Computerized FIR System.
- Automation of Case and Courts Management System at Lahore High Court and District Courts
- Local Government Automated Financial Management and Monitoring System.
Furthermore, the ASTP has achieved its goal of providing a spacious and fully equipped technological environment for the development of IT firms and facilitating the IT experts to do research and expand their services nationwide and as well as worldwide.
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Cost and Completion of Arfa Software and Technology Park Lahore:
The project of ASTP was approved by Provincial Developments Work Party (PDWP), on September 5, 2006. Before its final approval, No Objection Certificates (NOCs) were approved from a number of departments so that all the rules and regulations of concerning departments must be followed. The NOCs were obtained by Water and Sanitation Agency (WASA), Environmental Protection Department (EPD), Lahore Development Authority (LDA), Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and Pakistan Air Force (PAF).
This huge infrastructure involved a 17 storey tower, and a six-storey integrated parking and auditorium building and the total cost approved on October 16, 2006, by Punjab Administrative Government was Rs. 2194.080 million.
The Project Steering Committee (PSC), on the recommendation of Project Implementation Sub Committee (PISC), awarded the contract for building the main structure to M/s China State Construction Engineering Corporation (M/s CSCEC) on April 10, 2007. The final contract between M/s CSCEC and PITB was signed on August 31, 2007.
The construction process started on June 29, 2007, and faced many delays due to unavoidable circumstances such as the assassination of former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, due to which there were transportation strikes. Many industries remain closed too, which caused the delay in the deliverance of material at the site of ASTP. Then the general elections of February 2008 took place, and the work slowed down again. However, after the commencement of general elections the work sped up, but in April 2008 the Chinese Company’s Supervisor left the site and stated that he left due to security issues. Later the Pakistani Company NESPAK took over the project and completed it in 2009.
However, due to political instability, security reasons, other unavoidable delays and currency downfall, the total cost of the project was increased, and an additional amount of Rs.1000million was also paid to CSCEC for their loss in shipment and material import.
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Job Placement in the field of Information Technology and Software Industry:
Information technology has revolutionized the process of searching and applying for jobs. The introduction of job portals had made it easy for both the ones who are waiting for the right opportunities and the ones who are seeking good and skillful employees. It is easy and convenient as the job seeker looks for an appropriate job online and applies then and there without having to move anywhere physically. Similarly, the employers find it time-saving and easy as they just have to post jobs and vacancies online. Many websites are now working as job portals, for example, roozee.pk and indeed.com.
Advancement of Technology in the Country and of Arfa Software Technology Park (ASTP) Lahore:
The Arfa Software and Technology Park has established a road map which helps industries and universities to cooperate and share information and knowledge. The Information Technology University located within the ASTP has helped in providing professional knowledge and research plans for the IT industry. Many of the universities of Pakistan are now offering graduate and postgraduate level IT-based degrees to ensure the flow of IT knowledge across the country. ASTP has also helped in the creation of high-tech jobs, encouragement of new firm start-ups, attracting investment from foreign and overseas resources, increasing the software export of Pakistan and decreasing the import, hence, playing a vital role in country’s economy.
Other than that ASTP has provided online systems for land records management, technology incubator plans, online driving license management, computerized FIR system, automation od Punjab high court and district courts and local government’s automated financial management and monitoring system.
ASTP is also providing its services in Prime Minister Imran Khan’s vision of digitalization of Pakistan.
National Savings in Software Development and Arfa Software Technology Park (ASTP) Lahore:
Pakistan is a country of 60% of youth as its population. This 60 % of people lie between the age ranges of 15-29 years. Due to this massive young population, Pakistan is a pool of human resource, knowledge and energy. In the present era, Pakistan possesses 300k IT experts that are well skilled and have the knowledge and capability to lead the IT industry of the country. Currently, 13 software and technology parks are operating in the country, and almost 20k students of IT and software engineering are being produced annually by the local universities.
However, the IT sector of Pakistan contributes 1% in GDP, which is almost 3.5 billion USD. Currently, the exports of software, software consultancy services and other hardware and computer services are increasing day by day.Arfa Software Technology Park (ASTP) Lahore is also contributing in boosting the country’s economy and therefore taking part in national savings.
Services of Arfa Software Technology Park (ASTP) Lahore:
Arfa Software Technology Park (ASTP) Lahore is providing services in health, education, support services, transport, business, citizen-centric services, law and order, agriculture, livestock, food and as well as facilitating many industries.
IT industry is growing day by day not only in Pakistan but around the globe, contributing a huge part in the world’s economy. Pakistan is also flourishing in the sector of information technology and information communication technology. There are 13 IT, and software parks which are operating in the country and many more are to be built. With the establishment of IT parks the economy of the country will be boosted, and the living standards of the citizens will begin to get better and better.
Author: Muneeba Shahid, email@example.com