published in 1992 (Computer Jagat)
Computer technology is fast developing in all countries in Asia. Bangladesh also should develop in this field. While visiting Dhaka two managing directors of Epson recently said that the development that has taken place in Dhaka as far as new offices, roads, business centers etc. are concerned make them optimistic that within the next five years the application of computer technology will be vastly expanded in this country also.
Mr. Jun Kaito and Mr. Masayoshi Yamane are both from Japan, the economic giant of Asia. Epson manages the markets in the part of Asia consisting of China, Hong Kong and Taiwan from Hong Kong. The markets of Epson in the rest of Asia are controlled from Singapore. The outgoing managing director of Epson office in Singapore Mr. Jun Kaito talked to Computer Jagat. Seated beside him was the newly appointed managing director of Singapore office Mr. Masayoshi Yamane. Apart from computer business the reputation of Epson in the production and marketing of printers is extensive. Epson has opened office in Singapore for marketing of its products and services in Asia. It serves vendor organizations and buyers of different countries in the region for technological training. Epson has expanded the market of its computers in Thailand by using Thai language. Why then there is no such initiative in Bangladesh? In reply to this question Mr. Kaito said the size of computer market in Bangladesh is too small to justify such venture. In Thailand four lakh computers are sold every year while the number in Malaysia is one lakh. In Pakistan also the market of computer is big.
Bangladesh has got cheap labour, skilled manpower and a big market in foreign countries. Basing on these factors, can’t Epson set up any factory for the assembly or production of computer parts or peripherals in Bangladesh? In reply to this question of Computer Jagat they said : “If after Singapore, Epson installs its next Asian plant anywhere it will be in Indonesia or Thailand because these two countries have the advantage of infrastructure and trouble free labour. Compared to South East Asia, South Asia is trailing behind. Although in South Asia, India has a comparatively large market. Epson has not been able to make much headway there because of the policy of the Indian government As an open market their business in Bangladesh is good. Mr. Kaito came to Bangladesh for the second time. Observing the physical development of this country during the last six years he is confident that in the computer sector remarkable development would take place in the next few years. They consider some important reasons behind the progress made by India in the expansion of computer sector. The import of computers is not free in India, there are many restrictions. Yet in India there is 30% depreciation allowed on computers and peripherals. So, companies using computer, there has the scope of writing off the money invested in this sector within three years. In Bangladesh the rate of depreciation is 15% which is very low and does not provide any encouragement for computerization.
In India after the rate of depreciation has been increased many companies are buying computers. Young men willing to buy computers are provided bank loan facility. Young people exporting software to the foreign market also get bank loan easily.
However, the Epson officials admit that computer training in Bangladesh is very extensive. The number of computer training schools in Bangladesh is high. The training that Epson arranges in Singapore for imparting education in the use of its many sided technology attract participants from Bangladesh. These courses are of high standard. Besides local training courses are also arranged in Dhaka with the cooperation of Epson. The advantage of such training courses are that the marketing company invests a portion of its income and profit in training.
Regarding the trend of introduction of computer education in schools and colleges they said that Thailand and Singapore have increased computer literacy by including computer education in the academic curricula. Some countries in Asia are making progress in this direction. If Bangladesh wants to have a position in the computer world she must make very serious efforts in providing education and training.
– K. Nazrul Islam & N. Mostan