The Executive Vice Chairman (EVC) of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Umar Danbatta, has invited international telecom companies and potential investors to take advantage of the opportunities presented by Nigeria’s population of over 200 million people to invest in its telecom sector, especially in infrastructure provisioning for broadband.
As contained in a statement issued by the Commission on Thursday, Danbatta, who spoke at the inaugural edition of the Gulf Information Technology Exhibition (GITEX) 2023, in Marrakesh, Morocco, said that the telecom sector in Nigeria has become a major contributor to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), quarter-on-quarter, driving the growth of the digital economy in the country.
According to him, ”Our national plan is to achieve 70 per cent broadband penetration by 2025. We still have less than 50 per cent penetration. This means there is huge investment potential for investors. Nigeria’s telecom sector needs more investment in the area of infrastructure deployment.”
Representing Danbatta, at the conference, the team lead, Nigeria Office for Developing the Indigenous Telecom Sector (NODITS), Babagana Digima, said the Commission has a mandate to facilitate the development of the telecom industry in Nigeria, adding that one way through which this can be done is by attracting foreign investors that will further enhance the growth of the economy.
He informed the global stakeholders at the event that the Nigerian government has been very supportive of the telecom industry which has achieved upward growth with over 220 million active mobile voice subscriptions in Nigeria, over 150 million Internet subscriptions and broadband penetration of 48 per cent, the country is yet to be fully connected.
“The importance of this event for us as a Commission is to showcase the NCC as a Nigerian brand, a foremost telecom regulator in Africa and beyond and to bring about the much-needed investment that will enhance the development of the Nigerian telecom industry.
”This event provides us with the platform to showcase some of the talents that we have discovered in Nigeria. The Commission has sponsored three indigenous start-ups that are at this event to display their solutions for prospective investors and partnerships.
”There are abundant human resources waiting to be harnessed by potential investors for ground-breaking global technological innovations and advancement in providing digital solutions,” he said.
The GITEX Africa 2023 was the maiden edition of the GITEX Global Summit held in Africa. It is poised to be Africa’s most influential forum to accentuate the vast potential of a tech-driven digital economy. It aims to be an international platform for cutting-edge technology for all players from both the public and private sectors.