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[April 30, 2014]
Use science technology in all development activities: PM
(United News of Bangladesh Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Dhaka, Apr 30 (UNB) Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday underscored the need for using science and technology in all development activities, saying it has opened up the doors to advance the nation towards prosperity at a faster pace.
"I'm determined to develop a science and technology based society to ensure improved living for the people," she said while addressing the officials of the Ministry of Science and Technology at the Bangladesh Secretariat.
Hasina visited the Ministry for the first time today (Wednesday) after the formation of the government following the 5th January national election.
Elaborating various steps of her previous government in ensuring application of science and technology, the Prime Minister said initiatives have been taken to establish a digital Bangladesh by the year 2021.
In this regard, she mentioned the formulation of the National ICT Policy 2009 as well as setting up of union information and service centers across the country.
Hasina said that her government has formulated a time-befitting, modern National Education Policy giving due emphasis on science, technology and ICT based education starting from the schools.
She said six science and technology universities were set up during the 1996-2001 term of her government while seven more such universities were set up during 2009-2013.
The Prime Minister said Bangabandhu Fellowship on Science and ICT Project is being implemented to build a science based nation while other fellowships are given for research works.
She mentioned that the National Bio-technology Institute has been set up while works on establishing a Marine Research Institute is progressing fast side by side setting up of a number of world standard research laboratories.
"There is no lack of talents in our country our children and students are capable of quickly picking up new technological skills," she said.
"Bangladesh is making progress in respect to the use of technology," Hasina said and expressed her satisfaction that nearly 11 crore mobile SIMs are currently in use in the country and about 4 crore people are using internet facilities, which is unprecedented.
esides, the government has also introduced 3G network in the country that has made the internet faster, she said, adding that controversy over tendering have been removed as the e-tendering has been introduced in many organizations ensuring transparency.
Emphasizing encouraging children and students in the country towards science, the Prime Minister said steps will have to be taken to create more scientists.
About the disaster management, she said technological facilities will have to be utilized in facing the disasters as Bangladesh is a disaster prone country.
In this regard, she laid emphasis on having Bangladesh's own Satellite system and said her government is working to this end.
Referring to the setting up of nuclear power plants in Rooppur of Pabna, Hasina said her government has been implementing the project overcoming all sorts of obstacles.
In this connection, she mentioned that another nuclear power plant will be set up in the southern region as the electricity is very important for the development of the country.
The Prime Minister in her speech criticized the previous BNP-Jamat alliance government, alleging that they tarnished the country's image through terrorism, militancy and bombing. "Their activities pushed the country almost to a level of failed state." She said Bangladesh has now entered the highway of development as the government has been able to maintain over 6 percent GDP growth and increased per capita income to 1044 US dollars despite worldwide economic recession.
esides, she added, country's foreign exchange reserve has already crossed 20 billion dollars while electricity generation capacity has now reached over 11,000 megawatt.
Hasina called upon all to work hard with sincerity in building a middle income Bangladesh by the year 2021 and thereby establish a self-dependent country by reducing dependency on others.
State Minister for Science and Technology Yeafes Osman also spoke on the occasion.
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