The government is set to establish mobile applications and games development institutes across the country with a view to grabbing a share of the $100 billion global games market.
“This is a huge market and we should enable our talented youth to capture it. This is why the ICT division initiated the project,” said Zunaid Ahmed Palak, state minister of the ICT division.
“If Bangladeshi developers can grab even a small portion of the market, it will be a huge sum of money.”
The 'Skills Development for Mobile Game and Application Project' will cost the government Tk 281.97 crore and will be implemented by 2018.
The institutes will be set up in divisional cities in partnership with universities. “The government will not need to build any infrastructure -- this will save us time and money.”
Besides, the ICT division will set up 30 mobile apps laboratory, training and testing points at the district level.
Some 525 trainers, 8,750 app developers and 2,800 game animators will get training under the project; marketing and content experts will also be given high-level training.
The project will create more than 2,000 new digital jobs in the market, according to the ICT division's proposal.
“Actually we have taken this project to serve our local market of 13 crore mobile users initially -- this is a huge market. Then we will target the international market,” Palak said.
The current size of the local games market is about $40 million a year and is growing at 7-8 percent, he said. The market is almost exclusively catered by imports.
The size of the games market in India is about $525.5 million, while that of Sri Lanka is $31 million, according to the project document.
“The domestic demand for mobile games should be fulfilled by the local developers. Within the next five years, we want to earn money from the games development sector.”
Under the project, 300 apps for the government and private services, 50 mobile enterprise application solutions for different industries, 400 interactive education applications and 300 games will be developed.
The government will also run awareness and publicity programmes on games and apps, along with online quality assurance examination and evaluation of the apps.
One international mobile apps exposition and seven divisional apps and gaming fair will also be organised.
The ICT division has already written to the public administration ministry to appoint a project director and within a short time other related work will begin, said an official of the ICT division.