Major internet and technology companies are threatening to leave Pakistan
After the government of Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan granted enhanced powers to government media regulators that would impose restrictions and censorship on digital content, a move that was said to be aimed at restricting freedom of expression.
The warning comes from the Asia Internet Alliance, which includes technology giants, led by Facebook, Twitter and Google. The alliance said it was concerned about this new law in Pakistan that targets internet companies, as well as the ambiguity of those rules followed by the Pakistani government.
Under this new law, internet companies will face a penalty of $ 3 million for failing to limit the sharing of content that incites hatred and promotes terrorism, pornography, and any content that may endanger national security.
"Strict data localization requirements will harm people's ability to access a free and open Internet and shut down Pakistan's digital economy away from the rest of the world," the coalition said. He said the new rules would make it difficult for its members "to make their services available to Pakistani users and companies."
The Pakistani Prime Minister's Office said that it had been earlier since 2018, when his government came to power, and those rules were put in place because there was no immediate response to his request to remove anti-Pakistan content and obscene content from social networking sites.
This development comes weeks after the government of Imran Khan banned the famous TikTok application and said it had received complaints of immoral, obscene and inappropriate content.