State Minister for ICT Zunaid Ahmed Palak on 23rd March announced that the government will distribute a fund to 300 potential startups in Bangladesh. Each promising startup will get TK10 crore.
The government has undertaken the initiative of distributing the funds to 200 startups this year. The fund will be given in the form of equity.
The state minister made these comments at a programme organized by the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) at The Westin Dhaka. The programme titled “Merchants Development Driving Rural Markets (MDDRM).”
Senior Secretary of Financial Institutions Division Md Ashadul Islam, Head of Cooperation of the Delegation of the EU Maurizio Cian, and United Nations Development Programme Resident Representative Sudipto Mukerjee also spoke at the event.
Adding the enthusiastic entry of the micro-merchants into the digital marketplace the minister said “We will also provide free office space to the startups in 39 hi-tech parks for six months.”
Under a European Union-funded initiative, the UNCDF has reached out 20 lakh retail micro-merchants in Bangladesh. However, authority took the initiative in 2017 to support micro, and small retail shops to use technologies and participate in the online marketplace.
State-sponsored venture capital company Startup Bangladesh Ltd and local startup Sheba.xyz are going to sign a partnership agreement to provide microloans to small and medium entrepreneurs without collateral, opined Palak.
The government is expanding initiatives such as the MDDRM with the help of development partners and investors to ensure that Bangladesh does not lag in the age of digital economy, he added.
Palak further said the government had formulated five national strategies on robotics, block-chain, Internet of Things, Artificial Intelligence, and microprocessor design capabilities to prepare for that, citing the Fourth Industrial Revolution.