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Study Reveals 24-Hour Internet Shutdowns Cost Pakistan’s Economy Rs1.3 Billion

A recent study conducted by the Pakistan Institute of Development Economics (PIDE) has highlighted the significant economic consequences of internet shutdowns in Pakistan. The research indicates that a 24-hour internet blackout leads to a direct economic loss of Rs1.3 billion, which is equivalent to 0.57% of the daily Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

Internet shutdowns impact various sectors, including ride-sharing services, food delivery, freelance work, and telecommunications. These disruptions hinder economic activities and daily life for businesses and individuals relying on the Internet for their livelihoods and essential services.

Internet shutdowns

Dr. Nadeem ul Haque, the Vice Chancellor of PIDE, emphasized the critical role that the Internet plays in modern life, highlighting its importance for businesses, communication, and access to information.

However, Pakistan’s internet infrastructure faces challenges in terms of quality and coverage, which exacerbate the impact of shutdowns on industries like transportation and food delivery. To mitigate these economic losses, there is a growing need to improve internet access, particularly in remote areas, to empower youth, foster economic growth, and reduce socio-economic disparities.

Challenges And Initiatives Mark World Mental Health Day In Pakistan

Meanwhile, World Mental Health Day is being globally observed, including in Pakistan, which faces challenges in addressing mental health issues due to a shortage of psychiatrists and limited resources.

The world observes this day on October 10 each year and it aims to raise awareness about mental health concerns and promote mental well-being worldwide.

This year’s theme, ‘Mental health is a universal human right,’ aims to enhance understanding, raise awareness, and drive actions that support and safeguard the mental health of all individuals as a fundamental human right.

Statistics from the World Health Organization (WHO) indicate that Pakistan has 24 million people in need of psychiatric assistance. However, the allocated resources for mental health screening and treatment are insufficient to meet the growing demand.

In Pakistan, mental disorders contribute to more than 4% of the overall disease burden, with women experiencing a higher prevalence of mental health issues than men, possibly due to lower literacy rates among women.

Furthermore, it’s worth noting that Pakistan has one of the lowest numbers of psychiatrists per capita in the WHO Eastern Mediterranean Region and globally, with only 0.19 psychiatrists per 100,000 residents.

In a country where traditional values sometimes discourage seeking advice from psychiatrists, mental health often remains overlooked.

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I am an accomplished graduate of Strategic Studies, driven by a fervent dedication to comprehending global affairs and devising impactful strategies. Equipped with a comprehensive skill set encompassing research, critical thinking, and persuasive communication, I possess a distinctive viewpoint and an unwavering commitment to fostering inclusive decision-making processes. As a versatile individual, I excel in collaborating with diverse groups in various settings, leveraging my strong interpersonal abilities to adapt seamlessly to new environments and surmount any challenges that arise. With a passion for contributing to strategic initiatives, I am eager to leverage my expertise and drive to effect positive change within the field.

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