A roundtable titled “Developing Chittagong as an IT destination and showcasing leading tech companies of Bangladesh” was held at the World Trade Center, Chattogram on Wednesday, 20th February 2019 jointly organized by the Chittagong Chamber of Commerce & Industry (CCCI) and eGeneration Group. The multi-stakeholder roundtable was chaired by Mr. Mahbubul Alam, President, CCCI and moderated by Mr. Shameem Ahsan, Chairman of eGeneration Group. Mr. SM Ashraful Islam, Executive Vice Chairman of eGeneration presented a keynote on “Developing Chittagong as an IT Destination” followed by open panel discussion participated among others by Mr. M. Shaifur Rahman Mazumdar, Managing Director, Chittagong Stock Exchange, Prof. Shahadat Hossain, dept. of CSE of Chittagong University, Chamber Director Mr. Anjan Shekhar Das, Mrs. Abida Mustafa, Senior-Vice President, Chittagong Women Chamber of Commerce & Industry, Mr. Showkat Osman, Former Director, BKMEA, Mr. Syed Sirajul Islam Kamu, Managing Director, Well Group, Mr. Md. Abdullah Farid, President, Society of Chittagong IT Professionals (SCITP), Senior Solution Architect Souvik Das, SAP Indian Pvt. Ltd., Mr. Hasan Murad, Head of IT, KSRM, Mr. Wakar Khan, SCO of CPA, Mr. Iqbal Hasan, Head of IT, CCC, Mr. Ahsanul Islam, Chairman, BD Venture Ltd. and Managing Director Mr. Shawkat Hossain, Mr. Waseem Alim, CEO, Chaldal.com, Mr. Mirajul Huq, CEO, BAGDOOM.com, Mr. Abul Kashem, Chairman, BIPC, Mr. Shah Poran, CEO, Handymama, Representative from gamesclip Mr. Ahnaf Mohsin and Mr. Syed Jalal Ahned Rumman, Chairman, Hamer Strength Fitness and other key personnel from different sectors. Among others present Chamber Directors Mr. Kamal Mostafa Chowdhury, Mr. Md. Jahurul Alam and Mr. Md. Abdul Mannan Shohel.
Mr. Mahbubul Alam, President of CCCI said that Chattogram, the hub of commercial activities, can become hub of IT sector as well in future. The modernization and use of IT in Chittagong Port, Custom, EPZ, Shipping, Freight Forwarding and C&F activities have reduced both time and cost of doing business. This sector can be developed by setting up IT village like economic zones in this region. He puts importance on coordination between public and private sector, building up skill manpower for outsourcing, employment generation, earning foreign exchange and establish small scale own business in making Bangladesh a developed country and include IT in formal education as well as facilitate IT training massively. CCCI President expects that Chattogram will lead the country in IT sector like trade and business.
Speaking at the roundtable, Mr. Shameem Ahsan, Chairman of eGeneration Group said, “Back in 1983 in India, Infosys and Wipro moved their head offices to Bangalore, now Indian IT hub; followed by other tech companies. This included foreign companies looking to cut costs by employing more affordable developers. This is how the whole IT outsourcing model was born. It is about time that proper strategies and initiatives are taken to make Chattogram as the country’s IT destination. Bangladesh’s oldest and largest corporations have their headquarters in Chattogram. Unilever, Reckitt, and many others used to operate from the city. With top universities like Chittagong University, Chittagong University of Engineering and Technology, Asian University for Women producing world class professionals, there is no reason why we can’t make Chattogram as a next IT destination among emerging markets.”
Mr. SM Ashraful Islam, Executive Vice Chairman of eGeneration Group said, “The ever developing ICT industry in our country has unlimited potential for growth. The growing IT needs of all the businesses and sectors make the time ripe for development of the sector. Developing an ecosystem with perspectives for skilled resources in emerging technologies, startups at varying levels of maturity and venture capital can help foster an innovative environment for this region.”
Mr. M. Shaifur Rahman Mazumdar, Managing Director of Chittagong Stock Exchange said that public investment must be increased in order to make Chattogram IT hub. He requests the business leaders to pursue the Government for separating administrative capital and commercial capital. The presence discussed about required technical framework, necessary action and branding for making Chattogram an IT hub by involving policy makers from public and private sector, IT sector leaders and leaders from private sectors.
The roundtable gathered decision making authorities from the Government and trade associations, top technology leaders, representatives from private sector to exchange and share visions as well as strategies for creating and branding Chattogram as the next IT destinati