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Telenor Pakistan, country’s foremost telecom and digital service provider, hosted a Sustainability Conference to revisit the progress of, and pledge commitment to, the UN Sustainable Development Goal no. 10 ‘Reduced Inequalities’, at its campus 345. The event focused on Telenor’s sustainability efforts, its vision of empowering societies and sharing insights to accelerate progress on United Nations SDGs.

The conference featured key notes and a panel discussion by industry experts focused on challenges related to inequality, and how the public and private sectors can work together to enable our people and achieve socioeconomic growth. The event brought together Ms. Anusha Rahman, Minister of State for Information Technology and Telecom, Wenche Agerup, EVP and Chief Corporate Affairs Officer Telenor Group, Irfan Wahab Khan, CEO Telenor Pakistan, Ignacio Artaza, Country Director UNDP Pakistan, Cristian Munduate, Deputy Country Representative UNICEF Pakistan and senior representatives from Planning Commission SDGs Support Unit, NUST, Plan International, and Telenor Pakistan employees.

“Supporting Sustainable Development Goals across our global markets is a core theme for Telenor”, said Wenche Agerup, EVP and Chief Corporate Affairs Officer Telenor Group while speaking at the conference. “Sustainability at Telenor is how we do business and Telenor Group, with its vision of Empowering Societies, has fully integrated UN SDGs to create real value for the regions it serves. Mobile industry can have significant impact in achieving the SDGs. Through responsible business conduct we want to connect the many to the internet, not the few. We recognize our role in delivering on the UN Global Goals, particularly #10 – ‘Reduced Inequalities’. This is part of our business strategy with sustainability at its core.”

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During his keynote, Irfan Wahab Khan, CEO Telenor Pakistan said, “The private sector plays a crucial role in Pakistan’s economic progress and it can play an equally significant role in achieving UN SDGs. We leverage on digital and financial technologies as enablers to create amenities that have lasting benefits for our customers. Telenor Pakistan’s initiatives like Digital Birth Registration, m-Agri, Open Mind program, Digital Learning and Safe use of Internet, to name a few, are creating an enabling environment for future interventions by the industry. Our sustainability initiatives are removing barriers and bringing a level playing field for the underserved segments of the society to improve their standard of life. I’m extremely glad that our collaboration with the government and our business partners is supplementing our efforts towards the socioeconomic uplift of our people.”

Ms. Anusha Rahman, Minister of State for Information Technology and Telecom during her closing remarks said, “The use of public-private partnerships has proven time again to be beneficial for the Pakistani society. I’m pleased at the efforts made by Telenor Pakistan towards Reduced Inequalities by leveraging their digital products and services on top of connecting people across the country, and joining hands with the Government of Pakistan and other organizations to supplement the SDG agenda.

Government’s engagement brings scale & vision, and our industry brings sustainability around the programs targeting socioeconomic equality. This is the most satisfying version of public private partnership and we are fully committed to taking this partnership beyond.”

Telenor Pakistan has initiated a number of innovative ICT-based initiatives over the years to ensure socioeconomic wellbeing of the masses. The company is also extending its digital products and services to the people in the far-flung areas of Pakistan, through USF projects, to give them access to quality communication & data services, and mobile banking.

There is great opportunity for the industry to come together and combine their core competencies to introduce digital products and services to enable and empower the people of Pakistan.

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