ISLAMABAD: Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU) and BF technologies on Friday jointly launched short-courses for youth, providing them income-generating opportunities for having a better life, as well as to enable them to take part in the country’s socio-economic development. The launching ceremony held at the University’s main Campus, presided over by the Vice Chancellor Prof. Dr. Zia Ul-Qayyum. The two sides held threadbare discussion on development of these courses as per international standard through the use of new technology. Through these courses, the concept of knowledge-sharing and E-Commerce Skill development will be promoted. The program will be implemented through the Center for Social Reconstruction, AIOU. Those who participated in the discussion included Prof. Dr. Shoab Ahmed Khan from NUST, Prof. Dr. M. Iqbal Choudhry, Coordinator General COMSTEC, Dr. Shahid Mahmud, Chairman Interactive Group, Dr. Ghazna Siddiqui, Special adviser to UNHCR and Capt.(R) Bilal Hussain, Chief Executive BF Technology. As per the MoU signed by the two sides to this effect, the courses will enable the youth to develop life-long E-commerce skills that promote employment and assist in getting Pakistan’s economy back on tract on post-COVID-19 period. Under the concept of “Enabling GIG Economy from Home program”, the courses will help the youth to generate income from home. It is hoped that this program will contribute in eliminating poverty, generating jobs and adopting technology skills as per the vision of the present government. While highlighting the significance of the proposed courses, Prof. Dr. Zia Ul-Qayyum said that these courses are the part of the University’s recent initiative and its consistent efforts of mobilizing community in the country’s socio-economic development and providing institutional support to the government for ensuring a better future for the new generation. The AIOU, he added is working for a viable mode of communication to provide quality education to its around 1.4 million students across the country. Emphasis is being laid on Online learning and distance education with the quality assurance to meet the challenges, being faced by the nation in wake of COVID-19 crisis, he added. The University’s Center of Social reconstruction was recently set up with an aim to provide academic environment to the students for the socio development of society. This is engaged in creating sustainable academic environment for the social reconstruction of the society through various academic programs.