Agreement on BIMP-EAGA Data Exchange and Analytic Center signed

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/ 23 Oct) – Various executives in the information and communications technology industry in the Brunei-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines East ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA) signed a memorandum of understanding Monday on the establishment of a BIMP-EAGA Data Exchange and Analytic Center.

The signing took place during the Livelihood Exchange 2018 and Innovation Summit at the Marco Polo Hotel Davao.

In an interview, ICT-Davao President Samuel Matunog told reporters that the private sector-led MOU signing will allow them to establish a center, which would be a central data repository that can be shared among governments and private players of various industries in the BIMP-EAGA.

Data on agriculture and fishing will be initially added in the platform since these are the common industries in the region, Matunog said.

“We are trying to find out whether we can set up a data exchange where information is shared in a way that people will trust to share their data because this is the biggest problem – sharing of data especially with big data,” he said.

He said the data generated by most firms are usually kept in their data centers and that this center allows them to use and share information in a “secure and private way.”

He said they hope to encourage them to utilize the data exchange center.

“But what can we do with this data if it is just staying in this big data bases… We do not want to dump it in another warehouse. The problem is, what about data privacy? What about data security when it gets compromised? This is the biggest challenge here on how people can share it,” he said.

BIMP-EAGA member states saw the need for a center that will strengthen industries and entrepreneurs within the sub-economic region through the utilization of a platform that would allow them to perform data analysis and produce more data professionals.

Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) chair Abul Khayr Alonto said the private sector-led initiative is an “innovative undertaking that could help us map out prospects and insights on development initiatives for the sub-region through modern business intelligence solutions.”

“Indeed, the essence of BIMP-EAGA cooperation is felt when market-driven partnerships such as this one come to fruition,” he added.

He said one of the highlights of the ICT Infrastructure Cluster Meeting in Indonesia held last month was the discussion on MOU on BIMP-EAGA ICT Cooperation with the Department of Information and Communications Technology as the lead Philippine agency.

He said the meeting aimed to build partnerships and collaborations among the member countries in terms of ICT development, adding they agreed to have the MOU signed by end-2018.

“As the primary agency mandated for the socio-economic development of Mindanao as well the Philippine Coordinating Office to the BIMP-EAGA sub-region, MinDA has also been facilitating and coordinating efforts with our fellow government agencies to lodge ICT initiatives to the EAGA landscape and to the bigger ASEAN community,” Alonto said.

The events at Marco Polo Hotel were attended by some 1,000 participants in the ICT sectors from the four member states of the BIMP-EAGA tackling “digital transformation and innovation ecosystem.”

They were organized by ICT Davao in partnership with the city government, Department of Trade and Industry, DICT and MinDA.

The events aimed to encourage technology and outsourcing innovators to showcase their product or service, promote business-to-business meeting with BIMP-EAGA innovators and local industry cluster players, and develop the ICT industry cluster in Mindanao vis-à-vis the digital economy.

They tackled, among others, the government’s efforts at using technology to improve citizen engagement, increase broadband speed, and support for traditional outsourcing services. (Antonio L. Colina IV/MindaNews)