Acquiring knowledge and technology necessary:
Promoting IT in rural areas, Govt’s aim
The Government has given top priority to promote information
technology among people, especially the rural community to enable Sri
Lanka to emerge as a knowledge based economy. The development depends on
acquiring knowledge and technology is necessary to forge ahead, said
Minister of Science and Technology Prof. Tissa Vitharana.
Asia’s premier ICT event e-Asia 2009, the fourth in the series was
opened by President Mahinda Rajapaksa at the BMICH yesterday. It was
jointly organized by the Information Technology Communication Agency (ICTA)
and Centre for Science Development and Media Studies under the theme
“Opportunities for Digital Asia”. The three-day Information and
Communication Technology event of the region for the year includes a
conference and exhibition which will conclude tomorrow.
The country’s IT literacy rate is 30 percent at present and it has
improved over the years. The developing of the Nenasala concept in rural
areas was to bridge the digital divide and 600 centres have been set up
so far. The President had declared the year 2009 as the Year of IT and
English for the country to face the changing global environment, he
The administrative service needs to be proactive and dynamic.
Information Technology could play a key role in its efficiency. ICT is a
source of generation of jobs and income. With the stimulus given by
e-Asia 2009 the country could benefit immensely, he said.
Over 200 foreign IT professionals will participate in this event and
the conference will include 40 thematic seminal sessions attended by
global visionaries, innovators, practitioners, policy makers and
representatives from donor agencies. About 25 countries especially from
Asia including USA and Europe will be represented at the event.
Around 100 institutions and over 1,000 delegates are scheduled to
participate in the conference while about 10,000 persons on a daily
average are expected to visit the ICT-centred exhibition which is open
to the public free.
ICTA Chief Operating Officer Reshan Dewapura said that “e-Asia 2009
will be a great opportunity for interacting particularly with the
countries in the region.
About 408 presentations with the core aim of making the benefits of
ICT reach the people have been lined up. These will be under five
thematic sectors, namely, Emerging Technologies, e-Government, Digital
Learning, e-Health and Telecentre Forum.
“The wide spectrum of the countries represented at the event
including India, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Philippines, Japan, Israel, Nepal,
Cambodia, China, Bangladesh, Uganda, USA, USA, Malaysia, Albania,
Australia, Japan, Morocco, France, Switzerland, Argentina, Egypt, United
Kingdom and Kenya indicates the international interest in e-Asia 2009”,