The Bangladesh Association of Software and Information Services (BASIS) estimates there are some 15,000 freelancers in Bangladesh doing outsourced work for technology companies from across the globe.
The country also has some 500 registered IT outsourcing companies which collectively employ an additional 20,000 workers.
Compared to neighboring India, which accounts for around 55 percent of the $3.4 trillion global market and employs 2.54 million people directly in the sector, Bangladesh is an outsourcing minnow.
But as outsourcing costs rise in other countries like India, China and the Philippines, impoverished Bangladesh, currently better known for cheap garment exports for top Western brands, may be able to cash in.The average wage of an outsourced IT sector employee is around $8 per hour in Bangladesh compared to $20 per hour in India and $10 to $15 an hour in the Philippines.
The government has declared developing the IT outsourcing industry to be a key priority, which fits with their ongoing campaign to create a “Digital Bangladesh” by 2020.