Mar 11, 2009, 9:14 AM
The Taiwanese Embassy in Banjul on Tuesday held a workshop on the theme "Gambia as West African i-Corridor," attracting thirty participants mainly from the major government communication providers, such as Gamtel, GRTS and GSM companies, at the Paradise Suites Hotel.
The one-day workshop, which was funded by the Taiwan Institute for Information Industry (III); the major planner of E-Government in Taiwan, with a view to providing world class information system, was meant to expose participants to the Taiwanese government ICT division institutions and the country’s installation of internet connections in some of her ally countries like Sao Tome.
Samuel Chen, the Taiwanese Ambassador to The Gambia, said "this is the first time Taiwan is organising an ICT workshop in The Gambia," adding that Institute of Information Industry (III) is like the locomotive of science development of Taiwan.
Ambassador Chen stated that, III has made a great contribution for Taiwan’s development towards the advancement of science & technology.
The III has had a lot of precious experience of international cooperation from Asia to Europe, Latin America and Africa, he added, noting that the III has developed a very successful cooperation projects with Swaziland and Sao Tome & Principe.
"We know that today’s world has entered an era of ICT", he said, adding that, ICT service becomes the indispensible way of life.
"Mobile phones, i-pads etc. are widely used in all walks of life. Even IT develops the systems of e-government, e-commerce, e-finance and so on," he added.
According to the World Bank report, up to 2015, the number of mobile phones will increase to more than the global population. "It demonstrates that ICT application is the developing trend of globalisation," he remarked.
The combination of computers and mobile phones has been widely used to increase the various services, upgrading the work effectiveness and improving the convenience and quality of life. "We are aware that The Gambia is making the effort to walk approach this direction. ICT is also an important media to promote the target of PAGE."
As the development partner of The Gambia, the Republic of China, Taiwan is very willing to share the crucial resource of scientific development, he further said, adding that the current cooperation between The Gambia and Taiwan focuses on Agriculture, Health, Education, Infrastructure and Construction.
"We have never developed ICT cooperation, therefore, through the assistance of Institute of Information Industry; the workshop is an important platform to exchange the views with representatives of the Ministries and the private sector of The Gambia. This workshop also can provide the opportunity to realise each other’s thinking and demand; and build up the contact channel.
"I hope that in the near future, Taiwan can help The Gambia with more ICT training and the know-how transition. We are looking forward to seeing The Gambia’s progress upgrade year- by-year," he concluded.
The Director General of the International Division of Taiwan Institute for Information Industry, Dr Meili Hsiao, who spoke at the workshop, described the Asian island nation as the leading Information Communication and Technology (ICT) adaptor in the East and Southern parts of the Asian region.
Momodou Katim Touray, Deputy Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology, underscored the importance of the programme, adding that Taiwan has always supported The Gambia. He commended the two Presidents for cementing the Gambia-Taiwan relations.
Lamin Camara, Deputy Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Information and Communication Infrastructure, said The Gambia is taking bold steps in the enhancement and development of ICT.