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Country's digital infrastructure boasts tier-4 data centre

US institute okays design, China's bank finances

Mehdi Musharraf Bhuiyan | February 17, 2018 00:00:00

Bangladesh's digital capability is taking a boost powered by a latest data centre, with a US institute endorsing its design and a Chinese bank bankrolling the scheme.

The new National Data Centre, said to be one of the first 'Uptime certified' Tier-4 Data Centre in the world, is set to become operational at Kaliakoir in Gazipur by June, giving a boost to the nation's digital infrastructure, officials said.

The officials concerned at the ICT Division say that more than 80 percent works of setting up this mega data centre had already been completed.

Around 90 per cent of infrastructural works have also been accomplished.

Once operational, this high-end data centre is likely to generate around Tk 6 billion in revenue, as per the government estimate.

"We are aiming to make this data centre operational by June this year," said Abu Sayeed Chowdhury, Joint Secretary of the ICT Division, who is looking after the scheme.

"US-based Uptime Institute has already approved the design of this Tier IV centre while we are hoping to get their approval for constructed facility by March," he added.

Once in operation, this could be one of the first Tier-IV National Data Centers in Asia and tenth such 'Uptime certified' Tier-4 facility in the world, insiders informed.

Construction of the facility, located in Kaliakor Hi-tech Park off the capital, Dhaka, started in May 2016.

The total cost of this mega-initiative was projected to be Tk 15.56 billion, out of which Tk 11.99 billion came from the Export-Import Bank of China as project assistance while the rest of the funds are spent from government exchequer.

Bangladesh currently has a tier-3 data centre based in Bangladesh Computer Council building in the capital. Officials observe that having a tier-4 data centre will be a major uplift in terms of techno-capacity.

"The downtime of the Tier-4 data centre will come down to zero. While a tier III data centre has 99.982 percent availability, a tier-IV centre will have 99.982 percent availability," Chowdhury said.

"Apart from that, a Tier-4 data centre is able to sustain 96 hours of power outage while a Tier-III centre can sustain 72 hours' power outage at best," he added.

Officials concerned observe that having a tier-4 centre will boost the data capacity of various public agencies as the government has gone through some major digitization processes of its activities in recent years.

"The new data centre can significantly enhance the quality of the e-service of the government," said an ICT Division high official.

"This would also be an important step in enhancing the security of government's digital contents given that cyber-security is a major issue both nationally and internationally," he added.

As per present provision, only the government agencies will be able to utilize the facility of this latest data centre. IT-industry leaders, however, observed that private-sector bodies should also be able to use this state-of-the-art facility in the near future.

"If the private-sector companies like banks can use this facility, this would result in better utilization of resources," said Syed Almas Kabir, President of Bangladesh Association of Software and Information Services, the trade body of the software companies in the country.

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