For the forthcoming presidential elections, the United National Party (UNP) will not ask the people to vote for an individual, but for an intelligent leadership led by an individual.
Their candidate would be a young person who has obtained the degree from a well reputed international university, qualified in economics and international affairs.
The team they are fielding are also equally qualified and among them are engineers, economics experts and lawyers who are highly qualified.
This was stated by Ajith P. Perera, Minister of Digital Infrastructure and Information Technology, on the occasion of releasing the Survey Report on National IT BPM Workforce Survey 2019 at the Ministry Auditorium on Tuesday.
He made this statement in response to a query from journalist.
While making the speech as Chief Guest, the Minister indicated that digital and information technology in Sri Lanka is the responsibility of the private sector and other than in this sector no other field has generated the vast numbers employed. He said that according to the survey the number of IT professionals employed by 2014 is 82,854 while this figure has shot up to 124,873 by 2018, a percentage increase of more than 50 per cent.
He complemented the private sector in handling the IT industry and also the generation of exports to the tune of US$1.2 billion now which is expected to reach $5 billion by 2022. He forecast that no other industry could see such a progress that would certainly take the country to new heights economically and this is the industry that could take the country to the new era and the fourth industrial revolution.
The IT industry now stands as the fourth highest place in exports, and nothing could stop it topping the exports very soon as the potential it has, isn’t seen in garments, tourism or tea sectors.
He pointed out that there is a huge gap between the supply and demand in the supply of IT graduates, which the state universities are unable to meet. More than 11,000 IT graduates are annually required to fulfill the pressing needs of the IT industry in Sri Lanka, the Minister said.
Mr. Perera conceded the failure of the state universities to meet the IT graduate demand in the country, and highly commended the private local and foreign universities in supplying IT graduates.
The survey provided very important information on the IT industry workforce that would be helpful in making forward planning by the government, universities and all other institutions concerning IT industry, including private and state institutions.
It indicated that the ICT workforce in Sri Lanka has undergone structural changes while the global ICT sector experiences a period of transition. While the growth from 2014 to 2018 is more than 50 per cent, these figures are projected to increase further to 146,089 in 2019.
ICT companies have become the dominant employer with a share of 65.5 per cent of the workforce, overtaking non-ICT companies (22 per cent) by a wide margin. (QP)
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