Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen on Monday said the ICPC programming competition is a token of Bangladesh's commitment to the creation of a thriving digital world with easy, accessible and equitable solutions for all.
"This contest today, more than the problems it solves, is indeed a genuine acknowledgement of a new Bangladesh and its many new capabilities – where digitalisation is embedded into state policies and priority actions."
The minister made the remarks at the opening ceremony of the most prestigious international contest for solving computer programming problems for university level students – "International Collegiate Programming Contest (ICPC) World Finals Dhaka".
The inauguration was held on Tuesday (8 November) at the International Convention City Bashundhara (ICCB) located in Bashundhara, Dhaka.
The foreign minister graced the occasion as the chief guest.
State Minister for the ICT Division of Bangladesh Zunaid Ahmed Palak MP was present as a special guest at the programme.
The President of the ICPC Foundation & ICPC Executive Director Dr William B Poucher was also present as the Guest of Honor at the opening ceremony.
Deputy Executive Director of ICPC & ICPC Director of World Finals Contests Dr Michael J Donahoo, Senior Secretary of ICT Division N M Zeaul Alam PAA, Vice-Chancellor of UAP & Director of ICPC World Finals Dhaka Prof Dr Qumrul Ahsan and Executive Director of Bangladesh Computer Council (BCC) Ranajit Kumar were also present at the event.
Zunaid Ahmed Palak said that Bangabandhu envisioned making science and technology-based Golden Bangladesh.
Highlighting the importance of Programming, Palak said, "This can help us improve the world, but we need to collaborate, not compete."
He added that, "Programming is the language of the future. Programming can help bridge the gap between cultures, languages and societies. This is apparent through the various technological innovations we see in the world today. I believe that programmers are the problem solvers of tomorrow."
"Bangladesh is one of the fastest-growing economies in South Asia. we have progressed significantly in all sectors by utilising ICT," the state minister further said, also explaining the importance of the 3 C's – Creativity, Collaboration and Co-creation.
President of the ICPC Foundation Dr William B Poucher said, "We are delighted to be here in Dhaka. We are fulfilling our purpose which is to uplift every generation, computer science engineers to build on the strengths of the world that we have today to the benefit of their neighbours."
Meanwhile, Prof Dr Qumrul Ahsan said, "UAP recognises that the adventure of information technology will play a game changing role in the development of digital Bangladesh. It is a great honour for UAP to host this prestigious competition for the first time in Bangladesh."
He hoped this great event will be memorable and life changing and engaging with the best computing talents from all over the globe.
The opening ceremony, attended by the local and foreign guests including contestants, featured three cultural performances: first, Celebration of Global Youth; second, The Convergence (Music of the World X AI); and third, Sound of the Nation.
At the opening ceremony, the ICPC Foundation presented plaques to commemorate the contributions of the hosts, coaches, sponsors, and Regional Contest Directors (RCDs).
The Foundation, by presenting plaque, also honored late National Professor and Vice-Chancellor of University of Asia Pacific Prof Jamilur Reza Choudhury who pursued the dream of hosting the ICPC World Finals in Bangladesh. Late Prof Jamilur Reza Choudhury's wife received the award.
The 45th ICPC World Finals will take place at the ICCB on 10 November.
137 teams from across the world advanced to the 45th World Finals.
More than 1,000 people are in Dhaka to celebrate the competition, coming from 70 countries.
The 45th edition of the ICPC World Finals is led by the ICT Division of Bangladesh Government where Bangladesh Computer Council (BCC) of the ICT Division is acting as the executing agency and the University of Asia Pacific (UAP), Bangladesh is the host university of this contest.