PESHAWAR: The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) aims to improve governance through digital interventions and formally develop its growing Digital Transformation portfolio. To expand this agenda, a UNDP delegation met Imran Khan, Prime Minister of the Republic of Pakistan, to discuss future collaboration on Digital Transformation between the Government of Pakistan and UNDP.

Tariq Malik, Chief Technical Advisor on Digital Governance from UNDP’s Headquarters in New York and former chairman of Nadra, is leading the mission to create the first formal and strategic portfolio on Digital Transformation. Accompanying him was Ms. Aliona Niculita, UNDP Pakistan Resident Representative, says a press release.

During the meeting, UNDP discussed five priority digital interventions with the prime minister which emerged after briefings with 15 government ministries, departments, agencies and over 50 key stakeholders from the government, private sector and the development community. These priority interventions include supporting Nadra’s digital registration; development of Digital ID stack to  extend the digital infrastructure of Pakistan which includes digital payments system and more; supporting Ehsaas’s introduction of a One-Window Portal for integrated social protection services; digitization of Police Investigation Manual and establishing a national emergency helpline with National Police Bureau; and development of Pakistan Business Portal (PBP), with the Board of Investment, an online platform for ease of doing business within the country. UNDP is also conducting a digital maturity assessment in parallel to prioritize digital interventions using read data driven approach.

The prime minister appreciated UNDP’s partnership in development of a digital transformation roadmap for the country. He reiterated the importance of digital solutions for improved governance and that Pakistan is committed to using digital technologies for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It will, he added, help the vulnerable sections of the society, in particular, to get maximum benefit from the social welfare and social protection policies of the government at the grassroots level.

Ms. Aliona Niculita said at the occasion that “UNDP is supporting various government ministries and departments in digitizing their organizational processes, data and knowledge management, complaints mechanism, and monitoring and evaluation including support for digital courts.”

“Digital Pakistan must be about alleviating poverty, strengthening social contract and reforming governance. Leapfrog towards achievement of Sustainable Development goals (SDGs) would then be digital dividend of such transformation. The portfolio of five key digital interventions will enable digital society as well as introduce value-based digital government,” said Tariq Malik.

After the success of this meeting, UNDP will be partnering with other government ministries and departments to offer new and innovative digital services.