Asia Pacific ICT Alliance (APICTA), the largest IT association of Asia is holding its first Exco Meeting in Bangladesh. The 51st APICTA EXCO meeting at the BASIS office in Kawran Bazar will end on Saturday. 18 representatives from 12 countries are partaking in the two-day meeting.
Honorable ICT State Minister Zunaid Ahmed Palak was present as the Chief Guest at the inauguration ceremony of APICTA EXCO Meeting on Friday. The ceremony was presided over by BASIS President Shameem Ahsan, while Dr. Dileepa De Silva, Chairman of APICTA and Anir Chowdhury, Policy Advisor of A2i project of the Prime Minister’s Office were present as special guests. The ceremony was moderated by BASIS Senior Vice President Russell T Ahmed.
This time ICT Opinion Leaders from Australia, China, Chinese Taipei, Japan, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Hong Kong, Vietnam along with Bangladesh has participated in the event. Among others, M Rashidul Hasan, BASIS Vice President; Uttam Kumar Paul; BASIS Secretary General and Mustafizur Rahman Sohel, BASIS Joint Secretary General were present in the program.
Chief Guest of the ceremony, Zunaid Ahmed Palak said, BASIS has been an active partner in the Government’s initiatives. BASIS accorded the membership of APICTA last year in April. I am delighted that in a short span of 1 year BASIS is hosting the APICTA Exco Meeting. Government is working towards accomplishing its Digital Bangladesh vision. Government has taken up a plan to earn a revenue of 5 billion USD from ICT Sector by the year 2021. I believe 50% of it can be achievable from Asia and especially APICTA economies. He briefed about different industry development initiatives taken by the government and said; this is the right time to invest in the IT sector of Bangladesh. Digitalized citizen services at door steps of the countrymen can be good example for the Asian countries. I believe APICTA will play an instrumental role in developing not only the ICT sector of Bangladesh but also it can be able to make a major impact in realizing the ICT roadmap of Asia through mutual cooperation and collaboration between APICTA member countries. Lastly, he invited all to take part in the Digital World in October 2016.
Dr. Dileepa De Silva, Chairman of APICTA said, I think the way BASIS, as the national ICT association is working with the government closely, can be an example for the other member countries of APICTA. He appreciated the hospitality of Bangladesh and arrangements taken by BASIS for the APICTA executive committee members.
BASIS President Shameem Ahsan said, we are proud to host the APICTA Exco meeting for the first time in Bangladesh. BASIS has been working closely with the ICT Division and A2I for many years. BASIS has been working with the government in the area of National ICT Policy formulation, ensuring large investment for creating skilled IT workforce with the support of World Bank, Asian Development Bank and the Government and the like. Government is also initiating to invest USD 2 billion for local market development towards achieving USD 5 billion from exports. Bangladesh has been ranked as the 2nd IT outsourcing destination according to AT Kearney’s Global Service Location Index. He also mentioned that Government will extend their full support in any positive initiative to be taken by APICTA.
Anir Chowdhury, Policy Advisor of A2I said, before 2009 there was no specific vision set for the ICT industry of the country. Present government declared the Digital Bangladesh Vision 2021 first. A2I developed the world’s largest web portal where 43000 websites of public offices are integrated and this has been done through industry involvement. Internet service has been made available to the door steps of the rural people.
Russell T Ahmed, Senior Vice President of BASIS added in his speech that Bangladesh is the 3rd fastest growing economy in the world after China and India. The Government and ICT State Minister is very cooperative to develop the industry. We believe that under his able leadership, the ICT industry of the country will surely step into the next level.
APICTA is an alliance of national ICT organizations representing their respective economy to build and enhance a mutually cooperative network to promote ICT. Besides; the work to enhance technology innovations, capability and adoption, and encourage the development of indigenous ICT solutions for the global market.