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DIGITAL ECONOMY

Youth Development in Bangladesh

Present Awami League government has been committed towards the development of youth and giving priority to youth in its development agenda, policy-plan, and programs. The specific objectives of the youth development programs are to increase the participation of youth, particularly females in youth development, equip the youth with education, skill, and suitable training in technical, vocational, and professional fields, increase self-employment opportunities among the youth community. Opportunity creation for the youth tops the development agenda. Vision 2021, the central development agenda of the government, is focused on meeting the needs required for the youth to become skillful.

Major Policy Measures

Recently Awami League government formulated and endorsed National Youth Policy 2017. This policy aims to ensure gender equality and empowerment of the youth irrespective of their sex, race, class, caste by promoting youth engagement in education, ICT development, green technology, good governance, sustainable development, volunteerism, etc. Ministry of Youth and Sports (MoYS) is preparing to commence the process of formulating a comprehensive National Plan of Action (NPA) to translate the policy. Previously in 2011, the government endorsed National Skills Development Policy. Major objectives of the National Skill Development Policy 2011 are to improve the quality and relevance of skills development and access to skills development for various groups of citizens including women and people with disabilities in Bangladesh.

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Youth Development in Bangladesh

Quality Education:

  1. The budgetary allocation was recorded at $ 6.1 billion for the fiscal year 2016-17 for education sector that is 14.40 per cent of the total budget. There has been a steady rise in allocation for the sector in the last 9 years.
  2. Total 32000 educational institutes equipped with multimedia facilities.
  3. About 61,000 teachers have been trained on ICT and digital content development
  4. 125 Upazila (sub-district) ICT Training and Resources Centre for Education (UITRCE) established

Vocational Education:

The present government has a target to increase enrollment in Technical and Vocational Education by 201 percent by 2020. The enrollment rate in TVET now stands at 15 percent; was only 1.8 when this government took overpower.

  1. Number of Poly-technic institute increased to 49
  2. 7773 private training institutes approved since 2009
  3. Number of seats in Diploma level increased to 57,780 from 25,000
  4. Curriculum, training manual and martials are updated to match with international standard
  5. Activities for setting up 100 Technical School and Colleges (TSCs) are underway in 100 Upazilas (sub-district) while another 389 TSCs will be established in the second phase:

Higher Education:

The opportunity of higher education for the youth is rapidly expanding in the last decade. Eight public. universities were set up in the country between 2009 and 2016. At the same time, the government has given approval for establishing 42 universities in the private sector. At present, there are 39 public universities and 96 private universities in the country.

  1. A quality assurance mechanism has been introduced through the establishment of Institutional Quality Assurance Cells (IQAC) in 61 public and private universities
  2. High-speed internet connectivity is fully functional in 35 public and private universities
  3. University Grants Commission (UGC) has enabled access to their digital library containing over 30,000 research databases, e-journals and e-books for 44 member universities and research institutions.

Skill Training for Employability:

  1. 19 ministries and 18 departments are directly involved with skill transfer
  2. Since 2009, more than 2,100,000 youths received training from Department of Youth Development (DYD) of whom 547,169 got opportunities to be self-employed. During that period, DYD provided loan to 171,772 youths for their start-ups.
  3. Bureau of Manpower and Training (BMET) provide training to about 50,000 youths per year
  4. National Service Program (NSP) created opportunity for youth to get employed as well as serve the nation. Since the inception of NSP, 114,034 youth received training of whom 111,699 persons got employed for 2 year.
  5. Learning and Earning Development Project (LEDP) is a scheme under which 20,000 young women (SSC/HSC) received basic IT/ICT Literacy training.

Access to Information (a2i):

Since the launch of the vision Digital Bangladesh (2010), the youth of Bangladesh accessed necessary information, skills, and education to transform their lives. A total number of 5,275 Union Digital Centres (UDCs) have been established at all Union Parishads (the smallest local government unit). Youth can access information services, like Agriculture, health, education, law & human rights, tourism, environment & disaster management, science & technology, industry & commerce, and employment from these UDCs.

The National Web Portal of Bangladesh is the single window of all information and services for citizens and other stakeholders. Here the citizens can find all initiatives, achievements, investments, trade and business, policies, announcements, publications, statistics, and others facts.

Safe and Decent Migration:

  1. The government has introduced the “Overseas Employment and Migration Law, 2013” to ensure transparency and accountability of the recruiting agencies and to reduce the cost of migration.
  2. To encourage and ensure safe migration, protection of migrant workers and their family members, ensuring facilities and welfare of migrant workers, migration of female workers, the government enacted Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment Policy, 2016.
  3. Government has given approval to 24 commercial banks to distribute remittances through mobile operators. Currently, 18 banks have mobile banking facilities also encourage investments from non-resident Bangladeshis (NRB), the current government has provided licenses to three NRB banks. These banks have already started operating in the country.

Incentives for Sports:

Initiatives have been taken to build a new stadium, sports complex, gymnasium and upgrade the old structures. Sportspersons, teams, and clubs are encouraged by the government.

  1. 66 new infrastructures were built while 102 old ones were upgraded
  2. Divisional stadiums of Dhaka, Narayanganj, Khulna, Chittagong are upgraded to international standard.
  3. New international standard stadiums were built in Sylhet and Cox’s Bazar.
  4. A project has been commenced to build mini-stadiums in 487 sub-districts (upazilas).

Social and Community Activity:

  1. Government is keen to mobilize youth participation in social development. Relevant agencies provide financial and logistic support to initiatives by youth groups and organizations across the country.
  2. There are about 100,000 youth organizations in the country involved in social development activities. Youth organizations received $998,430 from Department of Youth Development (DYD) in 2009-16.

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