The last few months have exponentially increased societal, investor, and policy interest in the crypto, blockchain, and Web 3.0 technologies, increasingly referred to as Web3. Cryptoasset price volatility and the promise of exponential returns is a primary driver of interest, and a dramatic surge in cryptoasset investors is in turn forcing regulators to take notice of developments in this ecosystem. Pakistan ranks third in terms of crypto adoption in the Chainalysis 2021 Global Crypto Adoption Index; we estimate that Pakistan has more cryptoasset than public equity investors.
This paper is an initial attempt to frame debate about the Web3 ecosystem in Pakistan – which is a $100+ billion opportunity – and make recommendations on how policymakers should approach regulating this sector. At its core, the evolution of the Internet is a tremendous economic opportunity for Pakistan. Developing an enabling environment can create millions of new jobs, open new avenues for upward social mobility, and generate wealth for countless households across the country. In addition, excelling in this emerging Internet economy can help Pakistan leverage its talent to generate significant export revenues that are necessary to achieve sustainable economic development and stability.
Stakeholders should regard this working paper as an initial attempt to further the conversation. Deeper research and engagement is necessary in the short term, and one hopes that key stakeholders come together to ensure that Pakistan does not miss the emerging Web3 opportunities.
The South Asia Center (SAC) is the hub for the Atlantic Council’s analysis of the political, social, geographical, and cultural diversity of the region.
At the intersection of South Asia and its geopolitics, SAC cultivates dialogue to shape policy and forge ties between the region and the global community.
Paklaunch.com is a global community of talented Pakistani professionals, entrepreneurs and investors that was founded in San Francisco, CA in 2020 with the mission to connect the distinguished Pakistani diaspora with the entrepreneurial and investment ecosystem in Pakistan.
SouthAsiaSource Feb 14, 2022
E-commerce is the latest target in India’s push for an open digital economy
By Adnan Ahmad Ansari
India’s Minister for Commerce and Industry, Piyush Goyal, last week informed parliament that his government was in the process of finalizing a beta version of an Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC). To understand why the government is pushing for the ONDC, it is important to understand three underlying factors that are shaping India’s burgeoning digital economy.
Event Recap Dec 20, 2021
Event recap: “The transformative potential of crypto and blockchain for Pakistan”
By Fahim Ahmad
The Atlantic Council South Asia Center’s Pakistan initiative, convened a panel discussion on December 13 to discuss the potential of digital currency in Pakistan and how it will benefit the socio-economic situation in the country.
Issue Brief Aug 4, 2021
Beyond Pakistan’s 2021-22 budget: The economy and growth
By Uzair Younus
Recently appointed to his position, Shaukat Tarin has positioned the budget as being growth oriented in focus, with significant increases to subsidies, public-sector development, and salaries of government employees.