Digital agenda, science and tech ministry missing points in Piñera's speech - Acti

Monday, May 23, 2011

Lack of a digital agenda and the need for a science and technology ministry were a couple of the tech issues that Chilean IT industry association Acti believes President Sebastián Piñera ought to have addressed during his annual state of the nation speech this past weekend.

"We need to keep pushing for the creation of a science and technology ministry. In most developed countries, this ministry exists and is in charge of innovation, training and development, and also for government modernization," Acti president Raúl Ciudad said in a statement.

Although Ciudad said he believes that some announcements were "positive," the lack of an agenda to push the IT sector for the benefit of Chile's development is still an issue.

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"We believe that [government] should push the use of science and technology.... Without it there's no chance for [high] economic growth," Ciudad said. "There's a need for unity around integration and IT development, in a model that works by bringing more benefits to research and development."

Piñera's IT-related announcements included a promise of free WiFi internet in capital Santiago's metro and a national education evaluation test for IT, called Simce.

For this year, Piñera promised internet service for 3mn school children in more than 1,000 areas. By 2012, all municipal schools are expected to be interconnected with internet access.