Information and Communications Technology (ICT) conference was held in Thimphu yesterday to assess and discuss the achievements and plans.

Information and Communications minister DN Dhungyel said that the theme “Digital Inclusive Bhutan” highlighted the need to improve accessibility, adoption and application of ICT in the country.

“The 12th Plan has prioritised to work on these aspects to bridge digital divide, take advantage of technology, use e-commerce for trading, and use technology for job creation and service delivery,” he said.  “ICT has been identified as a tool to guide the destiny of the nation.”

Terrain, inadequate human resources, and poor digital literacy were some of the setbacks that ICT officials faced during the implementation.

Director general of Department of Information Technology and Telecom (DITT), Jigme Thinlye Namgyal, said that ICT must be embraced by government, business community and citizens to achieve economies of scale. “Digital literacy should be promoted, turn-around time (TAT) should be reduced, services should be made simpler and accessible even through mobile.”

Lyonpo DN Dhungyel launched the ICT parenting manual at the conference. The manual is for the management of ICT professionals in the country and to facilitate innovation and optimum use of competencies of the professionals.

Highlighting the achievements attained during the 11th Plan, lyonpo said that e-governance policy was approved in principle. “The e-governance coordination meetings conducted frequently had facilitated better coordination in avoiding duplication of works, and using and reusing systems available in the agencies.”

He added that the national common data hub platform was ready for consumption by relevant agencies.

Some of the achievements the minister mentioned were Bhutan Computer Incident Response Team (BtCirt), which ensures cyber security, e-payment system, website competition to keep online services intact and development of mobile applications.

He said that the conference was held to honour and recognise the contribution of the ICT officials in the country.

Currently, there are more than 300 ICT officials.

Rinchen Zangmo