Boost­ing ICT

Southasia - - 15 -

Bhutan and Sin­ga­pore re­cently signed a Mem­o­ran­dum of Un­der­stand­ing (MoU) to strengthen their al­liance in the in­for­ma­tion and com­mu­ni­ca­tion tech­nol­ogy ( ICT) sec­tor. Such agree­ments come at a time when Bhutan is cau­tiously tread­ing into the in­for­ma­tion tech­nol­ogy sec­tor and al­low­ing the trans­fer of global in­for­ma­tion. Bhutan was the last coun­try in South Asia to in­tro­duce tele­vi­sion (1999) and re­mains staunch about pro­tect­ing its cul­ture and safe­guard­ing its norms and val­ues from west­ern in­flu­ences. De­spite this, the coun­try re­al­izes the need to in­ter­act with the global com­mu­nity. An­a­lysts be­lieve that the lat­est agree­ments with Sin­ga­pore will fa­cil­i­tate a trans­fer of tech- nol­ogy be­tween the coun­tries and will equip Bhutan with the lat­est tech­no­log­i­cal trends.

More­over, the part­ner­ship will cre­ate last­ing im­pacts for Bhutan in ex­chang­ing work force and ex­per­tise in the tech­nol­ogy sec­tor. Bhutanese of­fi­cials are op­ti­mistic that the agree­ment will pro­vide av­enues of growth in IT spe­cial­iza­tion, ca­pac­ity build­ing and in­te­gra­tion of re­sources. It will also help Bhutan for­mu­late an ac­tion plan to ex­pand its in­fra­struc­ture and hu­man cap­i­tal by im­ple- ment­ing IT pro­grams, stan­dards and data ser­vices. Fur­ther­more, the ac­cord will open new vis­tas of pro­fes­sional growth for Bhutanese of­fi­cials who will be able to ac­quire train­ing from IDA In­ter­na­tional in e-Government poli­cies.

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