Digital World begins in Dhaka next month
A four-day international ICT exposition will begin in Dhaka from June 4, in a bid to spur the country's economic growth through the uses of information and communication technology.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is expected to inaugurate the show—Digital World 2014—at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre, where analysts and chief executives of local and foreign IT companies will share their knowledge and experiences.
“One of the major objectives of the exposition is to showcase our achievements and to see what other countries have done in the sector,” ICT Secretary Nazrul Islam Khan said.
He was addressing a meeting of the ICT advisory council of the government at the finance ministry.
Posts, telecommunications and information technology ministry, Bangladesh Association of Software and Information Services, and Bangladesh Computer Council will co-organise the show.
The secretary said the government has taken a number of projects for the development of the ICT sector and to create IT professionals.
The ICT sector earned $50 million from exports last year, only next to the pharmaceutical sector that logged $60 million, he said.
Zunaid Ahmed Palak, state minister for telecoms and information technology, said Bangladesh is becoming the next destination for ICT investment and outsourcing after China and India, as costs have risen in those countries.
“Samsung has opened a research and development centre in Bangladesh, while Microsoft already has an office here. Oracle and Facebook have expressed interest to do the same,” he said.
Jamilur Reza Choudhury, a member of the ICT advisory council, said fiscal and financial measures, human resources development, and improved infrastructure and marketing are important for the growth of the ICT sector.
AMA Muhith, finance minister, said ICT will be the second most important sector by 2021 in terms of exports and employment generation. “ICT will also help prevent corruption, as it makes a process transparent.”
Nasrul Hamid Bipu, state minister for power, energy and mineral resources, said a number of new power projects have been taken, both in the private and public sectors.
A 1,200MW coal-fired power plant will be set up in Maheshkhali at a cost of $4 billion with financial assistance from Japan International Cooperation Agency, he said.
The feasibility study for the project has been complete and an agreement may be signed next month, Bipu said.
A process is underway to install four power plants in the private sector to generate 2,000MW of electricity, he added.
Abdul Latif Siddiqui, telecoms and information technology minister, also spoke.