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ICT industry urged: Continue to innovate

The Information and Communication Technology (ICT) industry in the city must continue to innovate to be resilient and more competitive in the global digital economy, an industry official said this week.

Lawyer Samuel Matunog, ICT-Davao president, said the local industry holds the 5th Mindanao ICT Cluster Conference on November 18-19 to discuss key issues to include infrastructure development, innovation, talent development, and product development.

The conference aims to tackle the issues on how to develop and update digital policies in the city, said Matunog.

“We are calling for investment and initiative in the part of government to address policy recommendations, a policy that is more oriented to analogue infrastructure,” he said as he hopes to the stakeholders and talk about industry issues including its role in the economy.

“To speed up development, we need to update digital policies and open access to the Philippine market to more players. Any delay will cost us dearly,” he also said as among those expected to attend include top officials of companies that are key in the discussions on the issues.

The two-day conference will mainly discuss the importance of innovation and how the industry can achieve it. There will presentations and panels from industry leaders and visionaries from the government, academe and public sector.

It will also talk about action plans, aligned national ICT countryside development agenda of the National ICT Confederation of the Philippines (NICP), and are expected to consider sustainability, resiliency, and emerging technologies as priorities.

“Following the recent earthquake, we have to know how to develop our infrastructures through with the use of technology,” said Matunog.

“What is more concerning to us in the ICT industry is the penetration of the countryside, because we cannot forever be bringing this benefits to the urban center. We all are congregating the urban centers. We hope that even our work can be done everywhere and anywhere especially in the rural areas, where a lot of our population are located. We have to have more access to people in the countryside,” he also said.

Matunog also said in the latest Competitiveness Index, the ICT has the lowest rate based on the criteria on the ranking of competitive cities in the country.

Belle Torres, vice president for Industry of the Davao City Chamber of Commerce also explained the importance of having technologies that would benefit the city.

“The Artificial Intelligence, Big Data and Cloud Computing (ABC’s) are real. We need to to future-proof our businesses, communities, and all sectors. Innovation is the key. Infrastructure should suport, talent should scale up, products should be relevant,” Torres said.

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