Creative Industries Pakistan
Population: 199,085,847 (July 2015 est.)
Internet country code: .pk
green with a vertical white band (symbolizing the role of religious minorities) on the hoist side; a large white crescent and star are centered in the green field; the crescent, star, and color green are traditional symbols of Islam
Islamic Republic of Pakistan / اسلامی جمہوریۂ پاكستان (Urdu) / Islāmī Jumhūriyah-yi Pākistān
The Indus Valley civilization, one of the oldest in the world and dating back at least 5,000 years, spread over much of what is presently Pakistan. During the second millennium B.C., remnants of this culture fused with the migrating Indo-Aryan peoples. The area underwent successive invasions in subsequent centuries from the Persians, Greeks, Scythians, Arabs (who brought Islam), Afghans, and Turks. The Mughal Empire flourished in the 16th and 17th centuries; the British came to dominate the region in the 18th century. The separation in 1947 of British India into the Muslim state of Pakistan (with West and East sections) and largely Hindu India was never satisfactorily resolved, and India and Pakistan fought two wars – in 1947-48 and 1965 – over the disputed Kashmir territory. A third war between these countries in 1971 – in which India capitalized on Islamabad’s marginalization of Bengalis in Pakistani politics – resulted in East Pakistan becoming the separate nation of Bangladesh. In response to Indian nuclear weapons testing, Pakistan conducted its own tests in 1998. India-Pakistan relations have been rocky since the November 2008 Mumbai attacks, but both countries are taking small steps to put relations back on track. In February 2008, Pakistan held parliamentary elections and in September 2008, after the resignation of former President MUSHARRAF, elected Asif Ali ZARDARI to the presidency. Pakistani government and military leaders are struggling to control domestic insurgents, many of whom are located in the tribal areas adjacent to the border with Afghanistan.
Economy of Pakistan
Decades of internal political disputes and low levels of foreign investment have led to slow growth and underdevelopment in Pakistan. Agriculture accounts for more than one-fourth of output and two-fifths of employment. Textiles account for most of Pakistan’s export earnings, and Pakistan’s failure to diversify its exports has left the country vulnerable to shifts in world demand. Pakistan’s human development continues to lag behind most of the region. Official unemployment was 6.5% in 2015, but this fails to capture the true picture, because much of the economy is informal and underemployment remains high.
As a result of political and macroeconomic instability, the Pakistani rupee has depreciated more than 40% since 2007. The government agreed to an International Monetary Fund Standby Arrangement in November 2008 to prevent a balance of payments crisis, but the IMF ended the Arrangement early because of Pakistan’s failure to implement required reforms. Although the economy has stabilized, it continues to underperform. Foreign investment has not returned to levels seen during the mid-2000s due to investor concerns related to governance, electricity shortages, and a slow-down in the global economy. Remittances from overseas workers, averaging more than $1 billion a month, remain a bright spot for Pakistan.
After a small current account surplus in fiscal year 2011 (July 2010/June 2011), Pakistan’s current account turned to a deficit spurred by higher prices for imported oil and lower prices for exported cotton. Falling global oil prices in 2015 contributed to a narrowing current account deficit and decreasing inflation, despite weak export performance. In September 2013, after facing balance of payments concerns, Pakistan entered into a three-year, $6.7 billion IMF Extended Fund Facility. The SHARIF government has since made modest progress implementing fiscal and energy reforms, and in December 2015 the IMF described Pakistan’s near-term economic outlook as “broadly favorable.”
Pakistan remains stuck in a low-income, low-growth trap, with growth averaging about 3.5% per year from 2008 to 2014. Pakistan must address long standing issues related to government revenues and the electricity and natural gas sectors in order to spur the amount of economic growth that will be necessary to employ its growing and rapidly urbanizing population, more than half of which is under 22. Other long term challenges include expanding investment in education and healthcare, adapting to the effects of climate change and natural disasters, and reducing dependence on foreign donors.
GDP (purchasing power parity):
$930.8 billion (2015 est.)
$884.2 billion (2014 est.)
$836.3 billion (2013 est.)
note: data are in 2015 US dollars
Located at the crossroads of Asia, Pakistan has become a focal point for Investors and has in recent years, gained recognition as an important market among other textile manufacturing countries of the region. Considered as one of the top 10 textile exporting countries of the world, Pakistan is the 4th largest producer of cotton yarn and cloth, and the 3rd largest player in Asia with a spinning capacity of 5% of total world production. It also ranks 2nd in the export of yarn, 3rd in the export of cloth and contributes 3% to the total textile trade of the world.IGATEX
British Council Report | Cultural and Creative Industries in Pakistan
Cultural and Creative Industries in Pakistan underscore their importance not only as economic catalysts for national growth and pathways to employability. The Creative Industries also affirm cultural identity, projecting a multifaceted international image of a vibrant Pakistan. Moving beyond traditional media stereotypes this report provides a broad overview of the challenges faced by the creative sector and makes practical recommendations to sector groups, policy makers and the financial sector. It demonstrates that the Creative Industries in Pakistan can be an essential component of economic growth, generating billions of income and millions of jobs. But a strategy and policy framework is needed for the next stage.
This report is part of a Pakistan research series placing individual empowerment at the centre of a diverse range of topics that could play a major role in Pakistan’s economic and social future.
Download the Report
Can arts influence Pakistan’s social and economic future?
The British Council’s Dee Lowry and Abdullah Qureshi summarise the main findings of the new report on Pakistan’s creative industries, published 22 October 2014.
– What are Pakistan’s main cultural and creative industries?
– Why are these industries important to Pakistan’s social and economic future?
– What are some of the challenges facing Pakistan’s creative industries?
– How might these challenges be overcome?
– What does the future hold?
– Why was the report commissioned?