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Announces National Proposal for Forward-Looking Technology and Digitally Empowered Citizens to Usher in Change and GrowthSLT-MOBITEL, the leading communications and technology service provider in Sri Lanka, has announced a national proposal to improve critical services and sectors and digitally empower citizens.
The company, one of the most powerful players in the telecommunications and technology sector, cites archaic legacy systems, inefficiency, corruption, high operational costs and waste in critical sectors and services as the main reason to accelerate a system change in the country.
He said in a press release that the new system change he is proposing puts digitally empowered citizens at its core, with digitization of identities and strong digital security and privacy. This will serve as a cornerstone for new technological innovations that can strengthen digital commerce and e-governance in all aspects of county-critical operations.
SLT-MOBITEL has identified healthcare, education, transport, agriculture, tourism, justice, banking and finance as critical services and sectors that can thrive in this new system, more efficiently. and transparent, according to the press release.
Elaborating on this new system change for the country, Rohan Fernando, Group Chairman, Sri Lanka Telecom, said, “Just as Singapore has done, Sri Lanka has the potential to transition into a smart nation, making technology innovation the backbone of every sphere of activity.
“By doing so, the major problems currently facing the country can be solved and critical sectors and services can be transformed into highly efficient, transparent and cost-effective systems which, in turn, can transform people’s lives. Our vision is to move the country towards e-governance and digital commerce.
“We have the broadest presence across the entire value chain and an unrivaled ability to meet the needs of technology companies, large corporations, public and state institutions. With our capabilities and strong infrastructure across the country, we believe we are fully prepared to meet this challenge and bring about the change the people of this country want to see.
What is now SLT-MOBITEL began over 160 years ago as a national, state-owned communications service provider, has evolved over the years into a highly profitable and efficient publicly traded conglomerate, offering technology and connectivity solutions, ready-to-use technology platforms, advanced network backbone services and digital infrastructure.
“The SLT-MOBITEL brand unification initiative in 2020 brought together the best services in fixed and mobile technology. It couldn’t have come at a better time, as the same year saw a dramatic increase in the need for technology and connectivity solutions due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Seeing this increase and understanding future demand, we have extended our fiber network to 65,000km across Sri Lanka, providing fast and accessible broadband services to increase the country’s digital capacity,” the statement read.
“The SLT Group owns the largest data centers in the country, and our long-standing partnerships with global technology giants like Microsoft, Oracle and VMware mean that we are fully equipped to provide the most secure hosting services to public and state institutions, as well as large companies and foreign investors.
“As we continue to invest in infrastructure, our efforts are now focused on developing technological solutions for the challenges the country faces today and will face tomorrow. SLT-MOBITEL is digitally ready for this system change that we all want to see in Sri Lanka,” said Fernando.
Under this proposed system change, SLT-MOBITEL will focus on health, education, transport, agriculture, tourism, justice and banking and finance, the statement said:
Access to health care is a basic need. However, the health sector today faces many challenges that prevent citizens from accessing services and data. Our proposal aims to digitize the healthcare sector and will revolutionize the industry. It provides access to real-time information, remote patient monitoring, preventive care, timely assistance, healthcare analytics, and better overall patient care with data privacy and security. The digitization of the sector will give healthcare practitioners and citizens access to information at all times, and will also improve efficiency and return on investment for the industry.
With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and recent economic challenges, access to continuing education has become another national priority. These macroeconomic factors have left children and teachers with no choice but to move towards online education. However, rural areas have limited access and teachers need training in digital technologies and e-learning solutions. E-learning and smart classrooms must be actively promoted as the future of education.
With these factors in mind, we have outlined the steps to digitize the education sector in Sri Lanka. The country’s more than 10,000 schools can benefit from high-speed Internet access through the company’s extensive fiber optic network, processes can be automated through the introduction of digital tools and technologies, while libraries can be digitized for inclusive and continuous access. Additionally, teachers and students will be introduced to Learning Management Systems (LMS) to build a more agile and efficient education sector.
With the increasing urbanization of the country, transport and the resulting traffic jams have a direct impact on the economy. Loss of time in commuting, excessive fuel consumption, increased wear and tear on automobiles and increased number of road accidents all have a negative impact on national productivity.
SLT-MOBITEL offers the digitization of the transport sector of the country. Whether it’s multimodal tour plans, online ticket reservations, tracking apps for public transport such as buses and trains, providing on-site Wi-Fi and of the possibility of cashless payments, Sri Lanka’s transport sector has enormous potential to be more efficient and productive.
Sri Lanka’s food security has become a national priority in light of a host of issues facing local farmers, inhibiting their ability to meet demand. The current agricultural value chain is affected by obstacles at every step – erratic weather patterns and outbreaks of pests and diseases affect yield; price volatility, lack of accurate information on demand and supply affect farmers’ profitability; and distribution can be inefficient and disorganized, resulting in high wastage.
We are driving the digitalization of Sri Lanka’s agricultural value chain with the Helaviru Digital Economic Centre, a platform that will provide farmers with easy access to information and ideas, as well as a business platform for transparent transactions. The company is also accelerating the digital adoption of farming communities through capacity building programs and by introducing smart farming solutions.
Tourism is an essential sector for Sri Lanka, especially for bringing in much-needed foreign currency. However, the industry is currently struggling due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as recent global and local economic challenges. Data analysis and insights will be key to identifying Sri Lanka’s competitive advantage over other countries in the region and rebuilding a thriving tourism industry.
We are currently developing a one-stop web portal for all potential tourists to digitally activate the country’s tourism sector. This platform will be a centralized tourist hub, providing tourists with the information they need to plan their own stays or connect them with tour operators who have pre-planned options. This platform will also provide much-needed data and information on visiting tourists, which can be used to further develop the industry.
Justice delayed is justice denied – the main problem currently plaguing the Sri Lankan justice system. From the high number of court cases to the time it takes to reach a verdict, limited access to information, outdated systems requiring multiple physical documents, and lack of integration within the court system, all lead to delays in the process, rendering it inefficient.
Our proposed solution is to fully digitize the Sri Lankan judicial system. From establishing a digitized record-keeping process, to an automated platform for scheduling hearing dates in high commercial courts, a virtual solution for hearings when logistics become an obstacle, and integrating digital through other entities (i.e. the police) will lead to a more efficient judicial system of the country.
Bank and finance
In a world where more and more people work, play and live online, a world of opportunity awaits Sri Lankan businesses and entrepreneurs. Speed and access to connectivity are key to that future. Our vision to transform the current banking and finance sector to meet the demands of this future will see the digitization of this critical sector, so that it is able to support cashless transactions and become an enabler to promote e-commerce. in Sri Lanka.