The government will set up two Digital Economy hubs for the ICT industry to create conducive environment for digital economy by providing policy support, implementing upskilling and reskilling initiatives and coordinating Center of Excellence on digital technologies.
The digital economy hub which will be set up on the premises of Bangladesh Association of Software and Information Services (BASIS) and Bangladesh Association of Contact Center and Outsourcing (BACCO) would also develop a comprehensive institutional framework and system for the digital economy ecosystem that would benefit all businesses.
Two separate Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs) were signed today in this regard between the World Bank financed Enhancing Digital Government Economy (EDGE) Project of BCC and BASIS, along with BACCO at the auditorium of Bangladesh Computer Council (BCC).
EDGE Project Director Nahid Sultana Mallik and BASIS President Russel T. Ahmed and BACCO President Wahid Sharif inked the MoUs on behalf of their respective sides in presence of State Minister for ICT Zunaid Ahmed Palak and World Bank Regional Project Director Pankaj Gupta.
The MoU signing was followed by a seminar on ‘Effective Partnership Among Industry, Academia, and Government for Smart Bangladesh’, which was addressed, among others, by BASIS President Russel T. Ahmed, BACCO President Wahid Sharif and EDGE Policy Adviser Abdul Bari.
The ICT state minister also unveiled the cover of a newsletter titled: `Tech Insight,’ published by EDGE Project and edited by its Communication Specialist Ajit Kumar Sarkar at the function.Some 120 appointment letters were also handed over to those who were hired by different companies under the Hire and Train programme of EDGE project.
After the agreement signing, Zunaid Ahmed Palak, revealing the significant progress in the past decade towards achieving a Digital Bangladesh, highlighted the robust growth of the country’s digital economy.
After successful implementation of Digital Bangladesh, the government has been implementing various programmes in line with Smart Bangladesh vision as announced by visionary leader Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Palak said, adding that the main objective is to introduce Bangladesh as an intelligent and innovative nation by 2041.
The ICT state minister said the government is going to establish 10 Research and Innovation Centers (RICs) in 10 public and private universities.
The frontier tech-based research and innovations of these RICs will help create entrepreneurs which would create huge employment in the country, he added.
Palak said the government designed the EDGE project aiming to create frontier technology based human resources to cope up with the fourth industrial revolution.
One lakh graduates youths will be provided training on frontier technologies like artificial intelligence, robotics, big data, blockchain, 3D, he said.
Commending the active participation of the private sector in the implementation of Digital Bangladesh, Pankaj Gupta emphasized that fostering a strong partnership among industry, academia and government is very crucial to nurture a thriving digital economy.
As per the agreement, the involved parties will foster collaboration to develop a comprehensive system and institutional framework for the digital economy ecosystem.
This framework is poised to bring about substantial advantages for a wide spectrum of entities, including enterprises, startups, small and medium enterprises (SMEs), both in rural and urban domains, the agreement said.
It said (agreement) EDGE project will work closely with BASIS and BACCO to select its member companies to participate in many of the capacity development programs, develop strategy, policy, research & innovation, and intellectual property for the software/IT sector.
They will also develop contents and building capacity of relevant DE stakeholders on 4IR, relevant for software, IT/ ITES segment of digital economy (DE) and develop and manage partnerships with various local and international organizations for knowledge and resource sharing on 4IR, the agreement mentioned.
It is expected that by leveraging the expertise of these trade bodies and their networks, the digital economy hubs are poised to become dynamic centers of innovation, knowledge-sharing and skill development.