Don't Miss

Telecoms will surpass 25% contribution to GDP by 2025 – NCC

By on November 3, 2015

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), the telecoms industry regulator, has predicted that the telecoms sector’s contribution to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) will surpass 25 per cent by 2025.
The NCC made the predictions based on the rapid growth of the telecoms sector and the rising subscriber growth of over 150 million and a teledensity of 107.67 per cent as at July this year.
Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, Prof. Umar Danbatta, made the projection at the Nigeria Telecom Impact CEO Forum in Lagos, weekend, organised by ICT Watch Network to discuss how telecom could contribute 25 per cent GDP to the Nigerian economy by 2025.

Represented by the Director of Public Affairs at NCC, Mr. Tony Ojobo, Danbatta said: “It is well known that Nigeria’s telecom sector is one of the fastest growing in the world. Telecommunications is obviously leading as the aggregate Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) from 2007 to 2013, and ranked as a contributor of 24 per cent of such projects. Between 2011 and 2013, telecommunications sector attracted about $6 billion worth of investments which has accelerated information and communications technology (ICT) contributions to an estimated 10 per cent, translating to some $50 billion.”
It is the position of the regulator to accurately make a long-term prediction of what the sector of a hugely diverse economy like Nigeria would be in ten years. It is also appropriate to make a prediction where other sectors of the economy are intensely competing to contribute.

The role of the telecom regulator is to continue to provide the type of environment that will continue to encourage investment and growth. There is no doubt that this is the reason for the exponential growth in active subscriber statistics of more than 150 million lines and teledensity of 107 per cent. This is not comparable with less than 500,000 lines in 2001. It is not by accident that more than 80 million Nigerians have access to the Internet today. These are products of robust regulatory processes, Danbatta said.

According to him, “The telecom regulator is desirous of the ICT sector contributing even more than 25 per cent to GDP by 2025. At the current contribution estimated at 10 per cent, this implies achieving additional 15 per cent over the next ten years. This is by no means a very tall order, given what we have said about the competition sectors of the economy, which is for the good of the nation in the long run.”

He however said that any consideration of achieving such a feat must also give consideration to putting a robust plan, with long, medium and short-term measures to attract and sustain investments. In the ICT sector, it is all about investments. It could be investment in infrastructure, content, human capital, and supportive infrastructure availability, especially power as it relates to the sector.

To surpass the 25 per cent contribution to GDP by 2025, Danbatta said a a strategic plan was already in place, which projects achievement of 30 per cent of broadband penetration by 2018. If this is achieved, it surely would fast track the contribution of the ICT sector to GDP and surpass the 25 per cent contribution to GDP, Danbatta said.

“I am confident of this projection because broadband will energise the sector and the economy. Most of the activities in the industry will be e-driven. Digital warriors who will drive local content will emerge, and formal and informal employments would be created.  Commerce will thrive more on the digital space. Education and health sectors will receive a boost and governance will even come closer to the citizenry as government and its agencies will begin to run on complete e-platforms,” Danbatta said.

Director General of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), Mr. Emeka Mba, who delivered a paper at the forum, called on Nigerians to embrace the internet in doing businesses, insisting that the future of broadcasting in Nigeria is the internet. With the internet, several contents that will sustain broadcasting, will be developed, he said.

Managing Director of Galaxy Backbone, Mallam Yusuf Kazaure, who was represented by the Director of Public Relations, Mr. Franklin Ginger-Ekeh, corroborated with Mba on the need for high internet usage in the country. He gave details on how Galaxy Backbone has been able to create email addresses for all top civil servants across various Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDA) of government, to enable them communicate effectively, using the internet.