Celebrating 25 years of BASIS with the pledge to build Smart Bangladesh

Celebrating 25 years of BASIS with the pledge to build Smart Bangladesh
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The private ICT industry has implemented the government’s ‘Digital Bangladesh’ and at the same time established ICT as a reliable and growing export sector. Members of the Bangladesh Association of Software and Information Services (BASIS) and public-private stakeholders took an oath to fulfill their respective responsibilities to implement ‘Smart Bangladesh’ by 2041 and contribute even more to the economy through mutual cooperation with the government. They made this commitment at the 25th anniversary of BASIS on Saturday evening.

On Saturday (February 17) evening, BASIS celebrated its 25th anniversary with a grand event at GreenVills Outdoors in the capital.

At the event, BASIS founding president A. Towhid, former presidents Habibullah N. Karim, Rafiqul Islam Rowly, S.M. Kamal, Mahboob Zaman, A.K.M. Fahim Mashroor, Shameem Ahsan, Mustafa Jabbar, Syed Almas Kabir and current president Russell T. Ahmed have been honored. The mementoes were presented by the State Minister for Post, Telecommunications and Information Technology Zunaid Ahmed Palak. At this time, the former presidents Of BASIS called upon the government to increase the cash incentive for this sector from 8% to create a suitable environment for the software and information technology services sector and to keep the IT and ITES sector corporate tax-free from 2024 to 2031.

At the event, State Minister for Post, Telecommunications and Information Technology Zunaid Ahmed Palak, former Post and Telecommunications Minister and former BASIS President Mustafa Jabbar, Japanese Ambassador IWAMA Kiminori, Sri Lankan High Commissioner Dharmapala Weerakkody, Representative of US Embassy, Representative of KOTRA, Representative of French Embassy and thousands of BASIS members and leaders of other trade organizations were present.

In her welcome speech, BASIS Senior Vice President and Convener of the BASIS 25th Anniversary Celebration Committee Samira Zuberi Himika said, “The report of the GRC Committee, on which BASIS was founded in 1998 with a master plan, and BASIS itself are both 25 years old. BASIS is now in a strong position. I would like to thank and express my gratitude to all those who have been with BASIS over the past 25 years in creating this position, and we want to move forward with a master plan for the next 25 years.”

BASIS President Russell T. Ahmed wanted to share the joy of the celebration and said, “We want to share the joy of this celebration with everyone. We are all a family. We will make a significant contribution to the economy of the country by expanding our business in the domestic and international markets together. We are proud that BASIS has been able to play a leading role in local software and IT services standardization, international market access, and promotion and expansion of digital development. As a result, after the implementation of Digital Bangladesh, we are moving forward with the goal of implementing the dream of Smart Bangladesh. And in this case, ICT is the nucleus of Smart Bangladesh Vision. From agriculture sector, manufacturing sector, business to education, all these sectors need to ensure full use of software and IT services to become smart by 2041.”

Former Posts and Telecommunications Minister and former BASIS President Mustafa Jabbar said, “This milestone of BASIS is a reflection of the long and steady journey towards implementing the dream of Smart Bangladesh by realizing the dream of Digital Bangladesh, a story of innovation, creativity, and courage. BASIS has made an unprecedented contribution to empowering its members and providing world-class software and IT services.”

State Minister for Posts, Telecommunications and Information Technology Zunaid Ahmed Palak said, “We have been able to implement Digital Bangladesh because the BASIS entrepreneurs have contributed as friends and partners. 2,500 IT service providers and software development companies of BASIS have created employment for around three lakh youth, we want to increase it to one million. At the same time, we want to bring foreign investment of 1 billion dollars in the same period. BASIS also leads the ICT sector with $1.9 billion in export earnings.”

He also said, “ICT, Telecom and BASIS, none of us are separate parties. We all have been working as a team like friends for the past 15 years. Of course we will work together to make the IT and ITES sector free from corporate tax from 2024 to 2030. I want to see BASIS as $5 billion export earnings association in the next five years.”

It is to be noted that with the aim of developing the dynamic software and IT services industry in the country, BASIS started its journey as a national trade organization of the IT sector in 1998 with only 18 charter member companies. At present the number of members of BASIS is about 2500. In this remarkable journey, BASIS has played an unforgettable role in the progress and development of the information technology and IT services sector in Bangladesh for the past 25 years.

Imperial Hospital Sylhet

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Dulal Ahmed Chowdhury

Dulal Ahmed Chowdhury is the Editor of The Daily Dazzling Dawn. Previously, he has been serving in important positions in all the famous national dailies of the Bangladesh since the nineties. He has played a commendable role in journalism by participating in various events at the national and international levels. United Nations Conference, World Climate Conference, SAARC Summit are notable among them.

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