SLASSCOM signs MoU with the Northern Chamber of Information Technology to boost regional collaboration

The national chamber for knowledge and innovation in the IT/BPO industry of Sri Lanka,

Sri Lanka Association for Software and Services Companies (SLASSCOM) recently signed an MoU to kickstart a partnership agreement with the Northern Chamber of Information Technology (NCIT).

“This milestone is an important moment for SLASSCOM,” remarked SLASSCOM Chairman Channa Manoharan. Sharing the goal of the chamber to fuel the local IT/BPO industry to be the largest exporter in the country, rising from its current position as the fourth largest, he emphasised the need for regional collaboration. “Growth is only possible if it’s united growth, and it’s amazing to collaborate with fellow professionals, colleagues and friends from the Northern Province,” he said.

He noted: “The Northern Province has a lot of talent, a good startup ecosystem and organisations with great potential. There is a lot to learn and a great deal of knowledge and best practices to be shared. This partnership is only a starting point to jointly achieve our vision of growing the IT and BPO industry of Sri Lanka to generate revenue of USD 5 billion in exports creating 200,000 highly skilled workforce and facilitating 1,000 startups by 2025.”

SLASSCOM has worked collaboratively with universities, schools, and startups in the Northern Province before. The chamber is focused on taking these partnerships to the next level with the support of NICT. “We are also keen to take some of our chamber initiatives and scale them up in the Northern Province with the right partners, he shared.

Established in February 2016 NCIT is positioned as the gateway to the IT industry in the north of Sri Lanka. The chamber covers Jaffna, Kilinochchi, Mannar, Mullaithivu and Vavuniya districts and brings ICT associations, businesses, groups and individuals to a common platform to promote and develop ICT enabled industries.

“This is an unforgettable day in the NCIT timeline, and for the Sri Lankan ICT industry as a whole,” stated Chairman of Northern Chapter of Information Technology Thangarajah Thavaruban, who is also the CEO and Founder of Speed IT Net. “When we started this chamber as a small group, we wanted to bring all the ICT people in the northern region under one umbrella; we had plans to collaborate with national bodies which is now being realised; we are confident that we can enhance the ICT industry and digital economy more effectively with the support of SLASSCOM,” he added.

Commenting on the importance of the inter-chamber partnership, Managing Director at SimCentric Technologies Sri Lanka and SLASSCOM Board Director – Regional Forum Haridhu Abeygoonaratne highlighted that this was SLASSCOM’s first signing with a regional chamber. “This is where we would officially start to collaborate, upskill and enhance IT graduates in the north – the first step in our journey to upskilling the whole IT sector of Sri Lanka,” he added.

The signing took place virtually over Zoom, and was attended by several participants from both ends: Regional Forum Lead Dilan Rajapakse, Head of Entrepreneur Forum Priyantha Bethmage, Vice Chairman SLASSCOM Ashique M. Ali, Executive Director SLASSCOM Chaminda De Silva, as well as Board Director and Finance Director K. Venugopan and Board Director Nadarajah Shanmugarajah from NCIT.

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