Brazil’s government has unveiled R$ 500 million (US$ 248 million) program to boost the country’s IT services industry. The three year program is designed to promote job skills, foster public-private partnerships, and offer incentives for start-up companies willing to launch businesses in IT sector.
Brazil’s IT sector has about 73,000 companies and they earned US$ 37 billion as of 2011, but the Latin American country hopes to increase this earning to $400 billion by 2022. By the end of 2014, the country aims to train 50,000 new employees in IT sector.
By 2022, the goal is to train 900,000 new professionals, which market analysts indicate will be needed in addition to the current base of 1.2 million professionals for Brazil’s sector to maintain growth and global competitiveness.
The program is also designed to encourage government agencies to procure IT services from domestic companies and setting up research labs to support the industry.
The important feature of the program is supporting start-ups, whose increased number will one day make Brazil a formidable force in global IT industry. “We want software production in Brazil to grow at a very high rate in order to attract foreign resources to the country, generate income for businesses and create skilled job positions for Brazilians,” said Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation Marco Antonio Raupp. (Our video interview with Brasscom’s Sergio Pessoa provides further insights on Brazil’s IT stimulus: Click here.)
Known as ‘Plano Maior’ the program will focus on accelerating the growth of technology-based companies, consolidating Brazil’s digital ecosystems and attracting global companies to establish research centers in Brazil.
The MCTI’s Secretary for Information Technology Policy Virgilio Almeida said that one of the primary goals of the program is to reduce the gap in science and technology that separates Brazil from more developed nations.
Support for Start-ups
Start-up companies will be offered support through a network of mentors and investors that include technological consultants, research institutes and incubators, and partners at universities, large national and international companies. Other benefits will include tailored market access programs and preference with government contracts.
“National software certification will guide the process of government purchasing of domestic software and IT solutions. The Renato Archer Center for Information Technology, which is linked to the Ministry of Technology, will be responsible for issuing these certifications,” said Secretary Almeida.
The private sector has a large and necessary role to play in this process, says Antonio Gil, President of Brazil’s Association of Information Technology and Communication (Brasscom). “The TI Maior program aims to make Brazil a global power in the IT services sector. It will be up to the private sector to ensure excellence in software development and services,” he said.
In an attempt to increase human capital, Brazil will increase connectivity between college students and IT sector professionals. The program will create a digital hub to facilitate communication between these two parties and publicize job vacancies, basic and advanced courses, and professional information, and offer free courses for students and communities, and general information about technological development and related government programs.
The news comes barely a day after the country unveiled stimulus programs to build road and railways across the country.