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e-Asia 2011: 3 day conference on e-technology at Dhaka December 7, 2011

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, TECHNOLOGY.
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A 3 day conference from 1-3 December 2011 was held on e-technology in the Bangabandhu International Conference Hall at Dhaka on progress, prospect and problems of e-technology in Bangladesh in context of Asia. Prime Minister Sk. Hasina inaugurated the conference calling for wider use of IT in Bangladesh. Experts from home and abroad were speakers in different sessions. IT enthusiastics in hundreds attended the sessions.
Exhibition by different IT manufactures/service providers was also arranged in the center premise to display their products and services. Different Ministries of the Government also gave stalls to project their e-services.
Best 10 e-service providers in Bangladesh were also awarded in the session.

I could attend 2 plenary sessions and 2 seminars on the 2nd day and impressed and informed.

[Acknowledgement:The picture above is from Daily Star, Bangladesh]

An ordinary citizen

Link for more information:
e-Asia

Adoption of ICT in all sectors must be allout and rapid for Bangladesh February 15, 2008

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Chief Adviseer Fakruddin Ali Ahmed acknowledged while inaugurating SOFTEXPO exhibition on 14 February 2008 that despite some successes, the adoption of ICT in all sectors have been so far poor.

He also informed that Government has identified some key reasons:

a) lack of awareness what ICT could offer

b) insufficient telecommunication infrastructure and Internet connectivity

c) Expensive Internet access

d) absence of adequate legal and regulatory framework

e) shortage of required manpower

Government has taken few steps to rectify the condition:

a) to get connected with the second submarine cable

b) framing of the national broadband policy

c) reduction of bandwidth price

d) arrangments for alternative fibre optic connection between Dhaka and Cox’s Bazaar

e) preparations are going on for issuance of licenses for call centres, IP telephone, WIMAX and 3G

He said that Government is committed to form an effective information society in the country. It is about bridging the digital divide and connecting the unconnected.

But the adoption of ICT for all sectors should be allout and rapid for Bangladesh. We are already in backfoot. We are far behind than many of our neighbours. A comprehensive strategy must be adopted to overcome this.

The government and non-government organisations all should go to the Internet. For exchange of information Internet should be the mode. Software should be encouraged to be made by the local individuals and institutions and be preferred for applicaion in the local industries. Adequate training facilities must be available at the institution and university level. Job opportunities must be created for skilled people. Linkage with the outside countries and out sourcing should be created. Government in all these arenas would provide leading role but private sectors then could supplement this.

Government could also take the support of the NRBs. In many areas public and private partnership will yeild better result.

The present caretaker government, we hope, will take necessary steps to take Bangladesh to the information super highway in all sense.

An ordinary citizen

Post script:

Danish IT expert suggests policy change to tap ICT potential [DS]

Infrastructure needed to attract global IT giants[DS]

‘Empower poor through IT access’ December 7, 2007

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Chief Adviser (CA) Fakhruddin Ahmed yesterday called for empowering poor, disadvantaged and rural population through providing them with access to the information superhighway for building a prosperous Bangladesh.

He made the call while formally declaring open a two-day launching programme of Mission 2011, organised by Bangladesh Telecentre Network (BTN) at Bangladesh-China Friendship Conference Centre.

The head of the caretaker government urged all to help make the Mission 2011 a success, which can usher in a new era in the country’s march towards progress.
The theme of the mission 2011 is “Building a Sustainable ICT-based Information and Knowledge System for the Poor and Marginalised”.

The aim of the mission is to set up 40,000 telecentres all over Bangladesh by 2011, raising the number from existing 800.

Telecentre is a public place where people can have access to computers, internet and other technologies.

Telecentre exists in almost every country although they sometimes go by different names like village knowledge centre, infocentre, community technology centre, community multimedia centre, information kiosk. In Bangladesh, telecentre are called Community Multimedia Centre, Community Information Centre, Rural Knowledge Centre and so on.

The telecentre helps community members in different ways–like learning and developing skill, creating local content and capturing local knowledge, creating economic activities, providing access to physicians and other distant professionals, overcoming isolation, bridging the digital divide and reaching out to the youth.

Addressing the function, the CA hoped that Mission 2011 would play a significant role in unleashing the immense power of ICT for the country’s national development and help achieve MDGs in the medium term and a poverty-free Bangladesh in the long run.

Highlighting immense prospects of knowledge economy, he mentioned that India currently earns more than $50 billion annually from their software services alone.

Besides, e-governance programmes have brought about dramatic improvements in many countries of South Asia and Southeast Asia as well as in transition economies.

The CA said export earning from knowledge economy of Bangladesh is also growing but it remains far behind its actual potential.

He said the poor have an additional entry now to their list of deprivation. The better-off urban people are benefiting from the ICT-based new economy, but the poor, disadvantaged and rural population do not have access to the information superhighway. “We need to remove this barrier and empower these people by providing them with access to new technologies.”

The CA said a solution to this problem lies in a network of telecentres, which will provide access and support to rural communities.

He expressed his confident that the telecneres will not only minimise the digital divide by improving access to technology but will also provide invaluable support through appropriate contents and advisory services in the livelihood struggle of large number of the country’s population.

He said ICT can undoubtedly play a vital role in the country’s development endeavours and a well-planned and well-laid-out ICT network all over the country will speed up development on many fronts.[Source:Daily Star]

An ordinary citizen

IT parks in small towns and cities November 30, 2007

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[News & Views] Times of India reports that 4 more Indian cities are transforming into IT cities- 2 in the Tamilnaru and 2 in the west Bengal.Virunelvelly and Trichi are of Tamilnaru and Durgapur and Dankuni are of West Bengal.

The Indian National Association of Software and Service Companies has recently announced the plan. The President of the Association declared that they are taking the information technology from large cities to small towns. Manybig companies have extended their support to the idea. Tata Consultancy, Wipro and HCS and other large companies have expressed their willingness to buildup IT institutes in Tamilnaru and West Bengal. The concerned state governments are also enthusiastic in this regard. They have taken steps to improve the infrastructures of their towns. West Bengal government is ensuring electric supply, improving the roads and highways and improving the livelihood of the citizens in these towns. Tax-free economic zones are to be created in these towns and IT parks are being developed in these 4 towns.(Source: Prothom Alo)

The IT activity in Bangladesh in mainly confined in Dhaka. Now is the time for the Government to spread the technology to other cities and towns. The IT park or infrastructural facilities for IT development should be made available in those areas.

An ordinary citizen

Links:

1) One-fourth of Sundarbans lies in ruins
2) Strong local Govt key to democracy
3) Exit stretagies: the way ahead

Intel launches ‘World Ahead Program’ in Bangladesh September 6, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, Computer, EDUCATION, TECHNOLOGY.
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Mr. Craig Barrett,Chairman, Intel Corporation  in a press conference in Dhaka on 4th September, 2007  declared the launching of ‘Intel World Ahead Program’ in Bangladesh. Through this program Intel will try to develop infrastructure for Information and communication technology in Bangladesh.

Under this program Intel will supply 1000 PCs to different schools in 3 years in phases. In parallel, in association with Bangladesh Government  it will supply PCs to develop Computer Labs in 64 different districts of Bangladesh. It  will also support to develop high speed wireless W-Max Internet connection to schools of remote areas. In addition it will give training to the teachers and students and will help to develop different topics in local languages for imparting standard education. (more…)

‘The Intel World Ahead Program’ September 3, 2007

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Intel  introduces ‘Intel World Ahead Program’. The program is designed to introduce the digital world to the next billion new users. It is investing $1billion over the next 5 years to enhance live by providing access to uncompromised technology for anyone.

 

One of the missions of Intel is to provide greater accessibility to the worlds underserved by rapidly creating access to fully capable affordable PCs that are tailored to meet their need.

(more…)

Intel is coming to Bangladesh September 2, 2007

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Intel Chairman Mr.Craig Barret along with his wife is coming to Bangladeh on the 4th instant.

We are not informed about the details of his program. But we are feeling encouraged on his coming to Bangladesh. We hope that his visit to Bangladesh will mark as a milestone in the history of IT sector in Bangladesh.

Intel is the world’s largest semiconductor company and holding the number one position in semiconductor sale worldwide since 1991. (more…)

West Bengal set vision to rank among top 3 IT state August 7, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, Computer, GOVERNANCE, TECHNOLOGY.
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West Bengal has set the vision to rank among the top 3 IT state by 2010.

It has taken up projects –

a) an ASP( Application Service Provider) to set as enabler of e-Governance application through an effective Government – Citizen interface.

b) Established on an aggressive IT literacy program in schools and colleges n collaboration with industry leaders IBM, Winpo. and NITT

c) Government to actively promote IT usage in state, thereby improving the to the people

 

West Benga has been one of the Indian fastest growing states in last decade, with 5.2% growth in per capita net SDP.

The state has identified IT as a priority focus sector to be developed into a growth engine. WB is the first state to develop an IT policy in 2000 which is followed by Incentive Scheme in 2001.

(more…)

‘Intel’ is taking computers to Indian villages July 26, 2007

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The INTEL launched a program to take the Computer to the remote villages in India Intel is educating the poor people of this region in computer. At present they are working at Rajestan.

They have a contract regarding this with the provincial Government. Under this contact they will develop wireless network system in the community centre. They will develop internet service in the remote area and help the local people to use the internet in their own language.

To support INTEL, the ICICI Bank, the biggest private bank of India has extended its hand. The bank is giving loan to the villagers in easy installments to buy computers.

INTEL has recently marketed its Classmate PC for the school children. They have decided to distribute this classmate PC to the villages of India.

Already they have invest about 100 core Rupee in this project and they have appointed 3000 computer instructor to teach the students.

We think that such a program is necessary to be launched in Bangladesh also. We may not get INTEL to support us in this respect. Some among us have to come forward to take the initiative to change the face of our villages and their children and to change the fate of our poor people.

In the mean time, the ordinary citizen noticed two developments. One, the introduction of Internet in the mobile phones in Bangladesh.The other, the institution of Computer Information Centers by Grameen Telecom in the rural areas.

We think that these two steps will facilitate use of computer and internet to the common people including the rural people.

But we need more comprehensive projects to reach to all the village people and their children and need special initiative from the private companies and public sector to achieve this.

 

Bdoza

Budget, IT & e-governance June 13, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, Budget, ECONOMY, GOVERNANCE, TECHNOLOGY.
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It is said that tele-density per 100 persons in our country has increased from 9 in the last fiscal year to 18 now. But the Government has imposed duty on mobile phones. Does it mean that Government does not like the expansion of the mobile phones to the common people? Expansion of the mobile phones not only indicate increase in number of the sets as expansion of connectivity means expansion of business

It is said that the illegal business of Voice Over Internet protocol (VOIP) has been stopped. The policies for bringing VOIP business under legal framework are going to be finalized soon.The accuracy of the decision on VOIP will affect its utility in future.

To augment export earnings, IT products have been identified as one of the priority export products. But the products were not mentioned which were identified and how the export would be augmented not clarified in the Budget.

Internship allowances is being given to create an efficient workforce in IT sector.The volume of the allowance will determine its effect.

The ICT incubation centre was established to enhance the capacity of the ICT companies.

Infrastructure development work has begun to build a hi-tech park. But when work would be finished and initial service will begin was not mentioned. It looks as if it will not start by the endof the the fiscal year. West Bengal already started its 2nd IT park.

Creation of an IT Equity Entrepreneurship Fund with Taka 100 crore is underway. How the fund would be best utilized was not mentioned.

There is plan to establish a computer lab in one school of each district. But the ordinary citizen recommends taht every school of the country should have atleast one computer in the school

A one year post graduate course on IT has also been in the universities. Advanced skill in IT sector should have to be developed. More programmere and IT experts are to be produced to get the share of the world market. Bangladesh may be developed as an outsource of world market.

An allocation of Taka 1899 crore, which is 2.4% of total budget and 12 percent higher than the revised budget has been proposed for Information, Telecommunication and Information Technology sectors in the next fiscal year. We hope that the allocated money would be utilized properly.

Withdrawal of zero duty on computer and computer accessories was proposed and 5% duty was imposed. This will increase the prize the computers and its accessories and affect the computersation process of the country.

Withdrawal of zero duty exemption on telecommunication equipment and liquid dielectric transformer and to increase duties on this item to bring this at per with VOIP equipment and other transformers was also proposed.

No where in the budget the term e- governance was used and no vision was projected to introduce or enhance e-governance.

Bdoza

Post Script: 17 June 2007

Experts on NTV the other day was telling that it takes months to approve a project in ADP because of file moves so slowly in Bangladesh. Here we need the e-governance. If the secretariat is endowed with technical support, then from the very first day , all executives could follow the movement of the files or a project and take necessary steps.

One of the hindrance is that though in theory no body is against automation, computerisation and e-governance, but very few of our senior executives specially in public sector are conversant with this technologies.

But it is not difficult to overcome. Bangladeshi people are very technological- spread of mobile phone proved that. What is needed is a firm and sincere decision from the Government and a little practical support to the users.