Digital Bangladesh is showing the way to the world during pandemic: Joy
Own Correspondent, Dhaka, April 28: Sajeeb Wazed Joy, Information Technology Adviser to the Prime Minister, elaborated on how Bangladesh is moving forward with the benefits of digitalisation as employment and economic growth are declining around the world due to the pandemic.
In the lockdown, people have had to sit at home outside their own office, and with that opportunity, the details of how Bangladeshi freelancers are roaming the world have come up in the writings of the Prime Minister's Information Technology Adviser. Joy's column titled 'Digital leaps helped Bangladesh navigate the pandemic' was published in the influential US daily Washington Times on Tuesday.
"The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted labour markets around the world and continues to do so today. The short-term consequences were rapid and acute. Millions of people were furloughed or fired, and millions more began working from home," wrote Joy. "The long-term repercussions are still being debated, but one thing is certain: the demand for labor and the way we work has changed forever."
"Many industries and governments are struggling to adapt. But in Bangladesh, a government plan to modernize and digitize its economy, education sector, and health care has provided some answers," he added.
In the writings of professional information-technologist Joy, the progress of Digital Bangladesh and the benefits of Internet access for the people of the country have come up.
"The Digital Bangladesh initiative, which started to be implemented 2009, quickly increased internet access and paved the way for multifaceted economic development. In short order, Digital Bangladesh replaced slow, paper-based government services with easy-to-use internet and smartphone-based programmes," Sajeeb Wazed Joy wrote in his column.
He further wrote, "The government created a network of more than 8,500 Digital Centers that provided online services from cradle to grave. In 2008, those services were all but inaccessible; only 800,000 people in Bangladesh had access to the internet. Now, Bangladesh boasts more than 120,000,000 internet users. The internet covers 98 percent of the country."
In the opinion piece, Joy wrote that Bangladesh had equipped millions with the tools necessary to succeed in the digital world.
"The government built 86,000 'digital classrooms' and trained 1.5 million students in information and communications technology (ICT). As a result, information technology exports have soared from about $25 million in 2008 to $2 billion in 2021," he added.