Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan Image Credit: PID

Islamabad: Prime Minister Imran Khan has announced the launch of Rs100 billion startup loans for youngsters to finance their own businesses. This is the biggest incentive and startup loan scheme for the youth in the country with an estimated 60 per cent young population.

The prime minister announced two key initiatives for the youth: Rs100 billion loans for startups and 170,000 skills-based education scholarships to finance, support and train Pakistan’s young entrepreneurs.

“We are offering soft loans worth Rs100 billion under the Kamyab Jawan Programme to help the ambitious young people launch their own startups and businesses,” the premier said, adding that it was the “biggest ever incentive” in the country’s history, offering support for unemployed aspiring entrepreneurs.

The premier also announced 170,000 skills-education scholarships of which around 50,000 would be earmarked for high-end skills such as the latest technology including artificial intelligence and big data.

He urged the youth to benefit from skills-based and hi-tech training offered by the government to tap the immense opportunities in diverse fields and become self-reliant rather than waiting for government jobs. He said that it is the private sector or the small and medium enterprises that can solve the unemployment issue in the country.

10,000 businesses launched

At least 10,000 new businesses have been launched under the government’s Youth Entrepreneurship Scheme as part of Kamyab Jawan Programme in which over Rs8 billion has been invested, said the PM’s special assistant on youth affairs Usman Dar. As many as 37,000 youth have completed their six-month courses in conventional and high-tech trade in the first phase, while training of another batch of 55,000 youth is underway.