If Pakistan is heading toward fourth Industrial Revolution, the three erstwhile are still unheard though various industrial cities have sprung up in four sides of the country since the last 70 years of independence. The nation, which started its journey from a ‘thorn’, is the only nuclear power in the Islamic world and has strong industrial base across the country. However, political uncertainty, chaos and hostile attitude of the neighbouring countries have stemmed its growth to the desire level and it could not make an entry into the list of the first world countries. If there are forces of hostilities hovering around the skies of Pakistan, there are host of internal reasons, including mismanagement, corruption and ill-designed policies, which have kept the country in low industrial profile. Meanwhile, the population of the country has grown out of proportion and has been heading toward becoming the fifth largest country of the world. The successive governments have failed to manage human resources, which could be utilized as asset for the nation building rather than a burden consuming the natural resources. A large population is blessing for the business and industry as it can work as an engine of growth in a consumer market. People need new housing units, electricity, health and education services as well as all amenities of life. People mean business and business means people. Where there are people there is business. However, the policymakers have to go a long way to understand this simple truth at their best.
Now the fourth industrial revolution mantra is the talk of the town. But there is a need to bring paradigm shift not only in the industrial policy, but also in the laws governing business, trade and investment. Pakistan can become hub of industry and hub of investment once incentives are provided to the foreign investors. Europe is unraveling and falling to its knees due to rising cost of doing business. Pakistan has cheap and skilled labour and the investors from rich countries can be invited to invest in proposed industrial zones along the China Pakistan Economic Corridor and motorways across the country. According to the world media report, despite political chaos and uncertainty, Pakistan is heading toward industrial revolution and its economy will cross the economies of rich countries like France and Italy. However, the policymakers in Pakistan will have to understand and accept the ground realities and principles of modern economy. Unless and until they accept the new realities, it will be difficult to cover the journey toward industrial revolution with speed.