ECNEC okays Tk 544.91cr project to spread ICT services

16 May 2017, 16:01 | updated: 16 May 2017, 17:22

NTV Online
Photo: Focus Bangla

Dhaka: The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) on Tuesday approved 'Tottho Apa: Empowerment of women through ICT to build Digital Bangladesh' with an estimated cost of Tk 544.91 crore, aiming to expand ICT services across the country.

The approval came from an ECNEC meeting held at the NEC conference room in the city with ECNEC Chairperson and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair.

Briefing reporters after the meeting, Planning Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal said a total of eight projects were approved today with an estimated cost of Tk 2,723.61 crore.

"Of the total project cost, Tk 1,929.97 crore will come from the national exchequer while Tk 793.64 crore from the organisations' own fund," he said.

Of the approved projects, six are new while two are revised ones.

The Jatiya Mohila Sangstha under the Ministry of Women and Children Affairs will implement the Tottho Apa project by March, 2022 with government funds.

The Planning Minister said the first phase of Tottho Apa project was implemented during 2011- 2015 when 13 ICT centers were set up in 13 upazilas.

These centers had contributed a lot to address the day-to-day problems of poor and hapless rural women through reaching the ICT services at their doorsteps, he said.

Under the 2nd phase of the project, he said some 490 ICT centers will be set up in 490 upazilas, aiming to empower the womenfolk through ensuring their larger access to the ICT.

In the ICT centers, the project beneficiaries will be given support on e-commerce, forming technology-minded groups through e-learning method.
Besides, there will be development of web portal, information server and Tottho Apa TV.

Besides, the Cabinet approved a project for upgrading important regional highways to proper standard and width (Chittagong Zone) project with Tk 436 crore to be implemented by Roads and Highways Department by December 2019.

The project aims to ensure uninterrupted road communication system through developing and widening some 48.59 kilometers of two regional highways under Chittagong zone.

Besides, the Ecnec meeting approved the 'Netrakona-Bishiura-Ishwargani Road (Z-3710) Development' project with an estimated cost of Tk 261.19 crore to be implemented at Netrakona Sadar, Purbadhala, Gouripur and Ishwarganj upazilas.

The other projects approved at the meeting are conversion of 150 MW Sylhet Gas Turbine Power Plant to 225 MW Combined Cycle Power Plant, 1st Revised with Tk 796.63 cr, construction of a Workers Welfare Complex to ensure welfare and improve skills for the workers of CHT region with Tk 65.93 cr, Langolband to Minarbari road widening on Langolband-Kaikertek-Nabiganj district highway with Tk 121.57 cr, Infrastructure construction and strengthening of activities of Bangladesh Institute of Research and Training on Applied Nutrition, 2nd Revised, with Tk 332.12 cr and Production, preservation and distribution of improved pulse, oil and spices seed at farmers level project (3rd phase) with Tk 165.26 cr.

Ministers, State Ministers, Planning Commission members and secretaries concerned were present.