Power of technology
Dato' Yasmin Mahmood (pictured above), chief executive officer of national ICT agency Multimedia Development Corporation (MDeC), said the power of technology could be used to improve the Rakyat's (people's) standard of living. "With this, we are happy with the allocation of RM100 (US$23.5) million for two initiatives under the Digital Malaysia national agenda, which will benefit some 100,000 people from the Bottom 40 group (lower 40 percent of the income pyramid):
1. eRezeki initiative, which MDeC launched in June this year to advance B40 group with opportunities to earn additional income using technology. "We are pleased with the continued support from the government to further extend the benefits of eRezeki to more B40 communities across the nation. We hope to double the number of Pusat and Wakil eRezeki (eRezeki centres and representatives) from 33 to 66 centres next year."
2. The eUsahawan initiative will expose students who are enrolled in Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) institutions and micro entrepreneurs to digital tools and business models, practical experiences and advanced entrepreneur development conventions in the market. "We are keen to work closely with the Government to grow and nurture future digital entrepreneurs who can create wealth for the nation by capitalising on the continuous demand for digital products and services."
"We are encouraged by the announcement of the high speed broadband increment from 5mbps to 20mbps to expand coverage and internet speeds in rural areas, as this will serve to drive Internet usage and higher productivity," said Yasmin. "This is a big boost for Digital Malaysia and will serve as a very important catalyst to drive us towards a digital economy. The more people and businesses get online, the quicker we as a country can drive our levels of production, efficiency and ultimately improve the quality of life of the rakyat (people)."
"In addition, the continuous pursuit of digital inclusion across the nation and constant supply of high-quality ICT human capital are two pertinent components in increasing productivity, enhancing national competitiveness and wealth creation. We look forward to a winning collaboration with both the Government and the private sector in realising winning projects and implementation," she said.
"Also, the allocation for the Cyber City Centre in Cyberjaya for the next 5 years will attract further investments from multinational companies and put Malaysia on the global map as a business and technology hub in the region," said Yasmin, adding that such efforts "will certainly bring us a step closer to achieving the vision of a fully sustainable developed digital economy by 2020."