The first session of the Asia-Pacific Information Superhighway (AP-IS) Steering Committee was the first step to realizing broadband for all in Asia and the Pacific. Organized in Dhaka, Bangladesh, in November 2017, the meeting elected Bangladesh as Chair of the Steering Committee Bureau for its innovative programme, Digital Bangladesh.
Digital Bangladesh is the flagship project to enhance broadband connectivity in the country: the goal is to provide the Internet to the remotest parts of Bangladesh and to use digital technologies to drive forward a new age and accelerate the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). The high-level support has resulted in improving last mile connectivity, engaging in public-private partnerships and encouraging the wider application of digital technologies in various socioeconomic sectors. These initiatives will enable the Bangladesh government to improve local area networks, educational institutions connected to the Internet, efficient hospital systems, e-government services. Bangladesh increased ICT exports from US$ 25 million to US$700 million in five years since the implementation of Digital Bangladesh. In addition, the broadband penetration rate is expected to reach 50% by 2021 according to the government.