Asian Tiger Capital Partners, Level 16, UTC Tower, Panthapath, Dhaka-1215, Tel: +88 0171 584 0112 (Dhaka) Web: www.at-capital.com
•The emergence of India over the past 15 years as a global technology and outsourcing powerhouse has inevitably fuelled enthusiasm from governments in the rest of Asia to follow in establishing vibrant ICT sectors that might similarly transform their economies.
But with the exception of the Philippines in outsourcing and selective successes more recently by Vietnam, very few Asian economies have succeeded in replicating the Indian success story.
Bangladesh has been no different to many of its Asian neighbours in repeated attempts to kick-start a vibrant IT export sector. In 2002 it was designated a thrust sector by the Prime Minister. But the subsequent growth in the IT sector remained modest as evidenced by current net software exports of around $ 30mn .
There is nothing inevitable about Bangladesh’s emergence as a major technology destination in Asia. But we remain of the view that with the necessary reforms in terms of a focused vocational training programme for IT workers, lower internet costs and more effective leverage of the tech diaspora could see net software and ITES export revenues move from around $ 30mn currently to in excess of $ 1bn on a 5 year time horizon.
In fulfilling such expectations, we believe there will be significant and attractive FDI and investment opportunities for global corporates and investors