Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday inaugurated the country's first campus-based business incubator named after her martyred brother and heroic Freedom Fighter Sheikh Kamal at Chittagong University of Engineering and Technology (CUET).

Sheikh Kamal IT Business Incubator is aimed at developing skilled graduates and successful entrepreneurs in the IT sector to help build a "smart Bangladesh" by 2041.

It will encourage research and innovation at the university level to meet the challenges of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

The incubator also aims at enriching the industry-academia collaboration as well as unleashing Bangladesh's global opportunities in the IT sector.

Joining the programme virtually from her official residence Ganobhaban the premier also inaugurated Sheikh Jamal Dormitory and Rosy Jamal Dormitory at CUET.

State Minister for ICT Zunaid Ahmed Palak delivered the welcome speech at Ganabhaban.

Under the Tk 117-crore Sheikh Kamal IT Business Incubator project a 10-storey incubation building comprising 50,000 square feet and a 6-storey multipurpose training centre of 36,000 square feet have been constructed on five acres of land on CUET campus, according to official documents.

There are Startup Zone, Idea / Innovation Zone, Industry-Academic Zone, Brainstorming Zone, E-Library, Data Center, Research Lab, Bangabandhu Corner, Exhibition Center, Video Conferencing Room, Meeting Room inside the Incubation building.

The incubator also hosts an Artificial Intelligence (AI) lab, a machine learning lab, a big data lab, an optical fiber backbone, a sub-station and a solar panel to facilitate the work of entrepreneurs and researchers.

It also has separate corners for banks and IT firms, state-of-the-art cyber cafes, food courts, cafeterias, recreation zones, maker spaces, display zones, press or media coverage zones, own parking facilities, etc.

Besides, the multipurpose training building has a well-equipped auditorium with a capacity of 250 people and eight separate computer lab-cum-seminar rooms with a capacity of 30 people.

Two separate four-storey dormitory buildings (each for female and male) on an area of 20,000 square feet have been constructed. Each dormitory has 40 rooms.

A state-of-the-art research lab with two mini supercomputers will also be set up soon.

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