Cabinet okays Information and Communication Tech Policy | Greenwatch Dhaka | The leading online daily of Bangladesh

Cabinet okays Information and Communication Tech Policy

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The Cabinet on Monday approved the draft of the ‘National Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Policy 2015′ seeking the ICT sector’s faster development and promotion to help the country achieve the middle-income status by 2021 and turn it into a developed one by 2041.
The approval was given at the regular weekly meeting of the Cabinet held at the cabinet room of Parliament with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair.Briefing reporters after the meeting, Cabinet Secretary M Musharraf Hossain Bhuiyan said the draft of the policy was placed before the Cabinet meeting in February last where the Cabinet cleared it with some observations.
The ICT Division again submitted the Policy before the day’s Cabinet meeting accommodating those observations.
The Policy has been revised with the opinions of all stakeholders, ministries, experts and professionals.
This Policy has 10 objectives, 54 strategic themes which will be implemented by different organisations under short-, medium- and long-term measures to be implemented by 2016, 2018 and 2021 respectively. Besides, there will be an Action Plan with 235 action programmes.
The 10 objectives are social equity, integrity, universal access, education and research, employment generation, strengthening exports, support for ICT, healthcare, environment, climate and disaster management and productivity.
As per the updated data and information under the Policy, the current number of mobile phone users in the country is 12.03 crore, the Internet users 4.74 crore, Digital Centres 5,275, including union and urban digital centers.
The Policy will be a guideline for the sector to ensure the comprehensive and effective use of ICT to materialise the government’s vision to make Bangladesh a middle-income country by 2021 and a developed one by 2041.
The Cabinet Secretary said the Cabinet also gave the final approval to the draft of the ‘Cox’s Bazar Development Authority Bill 2015′ to constitute an authority like Rajuk, CDA and RDA in Cox’s Bazar to ensure planned development of the tourist town through the optimum use of its land.
M Musharraf Hossain Bhuiyan said basically it would be a regulatory authority but at the same time it would play the role of a facilitator to develop the town and enhance the living standards of its dwellers.
The main functions of the authority would be formulating a master plan, revise and update the plan from time to time. It will also conduct Land Zoning to ensure the optimum use of land in the tourist town.
Under the proposed law with 8 schedules and 55 sections there would be 15-member Cox’s Bazar Development Authority where the government will appoint its Chairman and three full-time members.
Besides, there will be three eminent citizens, including a female member, while the Deputy Commissioner, Police Super and Mayor of Cox’s Bazar would be among the rest of 11 part-time members.
The authority will be able to exercise its regulatory power if anybody violates the law while a provision has also been kept for Tk five lakh fine and one-year imprisonment for its violation.
The Cabinet meeting was also apprised about the participation of Bangladesh delegation, led by Finance Minister, in the Spring Meeting of the World Bank-IMF held on April 17-19, 2015 in Washington DC and the 48th Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors of the ADB on May 2-5, 2015.
Besides, the meeting was also apprised about the participation of the Housing and Public Works Minister in the ‘World Cadastre Summit, Congress and Exhibition’ on April 20-24, 2015 at Istanbul, the participation of the State Minister for ICT in the ‘Japan IT Week Spring-2015′ held in Tokyo.
Ministers and State Ministers attended the meeting. Secretaries concerned were also present. – UNB

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