Choki Wangmo

In line with His Majesty’s vision of using technologies to solve problems and prepare Bhutan for the future that is increasingly driven by disruptive emerging technologies, Thimphu Techpark launched the centre of excellence for software engineering yesterday.

About 25 information and technology (IT) professionals would look after the centre within the IT department of Techpark to develop enterprise resource planning (ERP) software and provide maintenance support for systems application products (SAP) system.

SAP-ERP system is a business process management software that allows an organisation to use a system of integrated applications to manage businesses and solve business management problems. The system helps the businesses manage their business processes effectively via a unified system.

In coming months, Techpark is expected to recruit about 20 additional developers and business analysts as the government outsourced two software development projects – Bhutan integrated taxation system and health information system.

The two systems are expected to revolutionise the automation of taxation system and health care system and bring multiple benefits to the people while saving cost.

Druk Holding and Investments (DHI) chairman, Ugen Chewang, said the projects would involve international partners and experts to enhance knowledge transfer and strengthen local capacities.

He said DHI wanted to separate Techpark from the real estate branch and develop into a centre where the country doesn’t need foreign IT firms and consultancy services. “We want to gradually build the competence of our people.”

According to him, outsourcing projects to foreign IT firms not only deprived Bhutanese of enhancing capacity but it also lacked effective maintenance after the systems were delivered because the firms were located outside Bhutan.

The centre of excellence for software engineering would also build capacity within Bhutan to export services to other countries.

The process of transforming Techpark into an IT service company was initiated in 2019 in line with His Majesty’s vision and the DHI roadmap 2030. “His Majesty’s clear articulation of the need for our country to prepare for a future driven by technologies has inspired this transformation,” Ugen Chewang said.