Bhutan telecom launched the Business Community Management System for Disaster control on 12th December, 2019 graced by the Minster of Information and Communication Karma Donen Wangdi, representatives from JICA, Official Development Assistance (ODA), delegates from Japan, Bhutan Telecom Staff, Business Continuity Plan (BCP) members and the media. The project began in November 2018 supported as a technical cooperation program by JICA.
The CEO of Bhutan Telecom opened the event by stating how important an addition the BCMS is to the disaster resilient emergency mobile network which was commissioned in Jakar on 29th June 2019 with the assistance of JICA.
He stated, “The BCMS is a component of two complimentary projects, the one in Jakar facilitating the hardware aspect and the other in BCMS project as the software assistance project. Both projects will help us address the issues and mitigate problems in times of disasters. BCMS policy and its other variables are supported by the emergency mobile network based in Jakar. Other than the emergency services, we will bring about substantial improvements in our services during normal time as well”.
The BCMS was adopted from the BCMS in Japan, which the BT CEO thanked the JICA and other supporting partners for the implementation of such a standardised system.
Following that, the Lyonpo also stressed on the importance of Japan’s unwavering partnership with Bhutan since the 1980s in accomplishing various key projects.
“BCMS is intended to provide guidance to BT during disasters and large failures to continue providing telecommunication services and quickly restore to the normal operations. It is the process of mitigation and rapid restoration to deal with potential threats to essential ICT services during disaster and is one of the essential strategies towards disaster preparedness, to ensure employees safety and assets of an organization are protected in order to provide sustainable services or products in the event of the disaster.
Recognizing the necessity of BCP in ICT sector, the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) signed the “The Project on Development of Business Continuity Plan (BCP)” with Government of Bhutan “for Disaster Control” in 2017.
As part of BT’s Management principles and with the understanding of the company’s current situation, the BCP will form a part of the management strategy. BCP has taken into consideration the BT’s vision, mission, objectives, internal and external obligations, legal and regulatory responsibilities, including the commitment to satisfy the employee need during both normal and disaster time.
While the modus operandi of BT’s BCP is designed based on top-down approach with the Chief Executive Officer as the Commander in Chief, safety of the employees engaged in the daily operations during normal conditions and recovery efforts following a disaster will be accorded the highest priority. Under no circumstance shall the safety of the employees be compromised.
This is the beginning of proper BCMS and will extend BT’s knowhow to entire Bhutan in addition to the Disaster Resilient Mobile network commissioned in June this year at Jakar.