When we look back at the recent achievements of the Bangladesh economy, there is a whole lot to be proud of, but our success in the near future will depend on our ability to adapt and respond effectively to rapid technological changes in the world.
The global economy now looks like never before, and breakthroughs in the fields of AI, robotics, cybernetics, biotech, 3D printing, and quantum computing have redefined notions of what is possible in the world.
If Bangladesh wishes to keep up with these dizzying developments, we must pay close attention, and tailor our skills and education accordingly; Digital Bangladesh must not be a mere buzzword, but a concept we must fully embrace.
To that end, it is not enough to simply purchase equipment or build IT parks -- these are wonderful initiatives and very necessary, but the importance of internet freedom should not be ignored.
Klaus Schwab, founder of WEF, gave the technological paradigm shift we are now seeing the name Fourth Industrial Revolution, and we would do well take note. It is being predicted that in Bangladesh, over 5 million jobs, in industries as varied as garments, food, agriculture, and leather, could be lost due to technological progress.
According to a study conducted by the Access to Information (a2i) program under the ICT Division, in the RMG sector alone, 2.7 million jobs could be lost by the year 2041.
It is clear that we cannot afford to miss the technology train: The government must make it a priority to spend on tech education, and this training must begin at the very early stages of childhood. In addition, new communication paradigms like social media and various apps must be seen not with fear, but as a necessary part of an exciting, new, connected world.