Only ICT Sector Recorded Growth In Q1 2016—Minister | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Only ICT Sector Recorded Growth In Q1 2016—Minister

Shittu, ICT
Posted: Jul 27, 2016 at 6:18 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Chibuzor Emejor

Abuja

Adebayo Shittu, Minister of Communications, said on Tuesday that Information and Communications Technology is the only sector in Nigeria’s economy that witnessed positive growth of about 10 percent in the first quarter of 2016, noting that it has become a major contributor to the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

Shittu said that with the upsurge in telephone density cutting across the technology platforms, the telecommunications industry has enabled other industries to grow.

The minister also said that the mobile ecosystem currently contributes over $10 billion in value addition to Nigeria’s economy, noting that mobile services have the potential to enable Nigerians benefit from the exchange of information for business and social needs for increased productivity.

Delivering a keynote address on the theme, ‘Mobility, Technology and the Nigerian Economy’, at the 2016 Information Communication Technology and Telecommunications Expo (2016 ICTEL EXPO) organised by the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Lagos, the minister said the Smart Digital Nigeria project is suitable ICT platform for diversification of the Nigerian economy.

A statement by the Minister’s Special Assistant on Media, Victor Oluwadamilare, quoted him as saying that the global quest for ICT for development is enormous to both developed and developing countries, as  ICT skills are critical to the success of enhancing national development in a globalised era.

“In this regard, our government is focused on creating opportunities for citizenship participation in ICT training, knowledge and skills acquisition, and general application and usage of ICT tools to solve problems, promote their wellbeing and enhance national growth.

“No doubt, with the dwindling revenue from the oil and gas sector, the Federal Government has realised more than ever before that telecommunication and ICT are amongst the main drivers for the social and economic development of Nigeria and play a vital role in enhancing access to basic services in all sectors of our national life”, he said.

While addressing the organisers of the event, he tasked them to continue to connect businesses and create opportunities for Nigerians in the ICT sector as the nation strives to diversify its economy from the non oil sector.

He stressed that the theme for the Expo was apt as the platform would encourage conversations and the sharing of opinions on innovations and trends as well as providing an excellent networking opportunity for business decision makers, innovation managers, start-ups, ICT academics, venture capitalists, and other players in Nigeria’s ICT sector.

Shittu assured that the government would provide the needed enabling environment for the ICT and telecommunication sector to thrive through enactment of relevant legislation, saying, “With the e-Government Master-plan implementation, government’s attention on e-Governance as the nucleus to drive other automation and IT agenda is assured under my very watch.

“The change mantra of this administration comes in different colorations. We in the ICT sector have a responsibility to put the nation on the path of growth. This can be easily achieved when partners like LCCI keying into the SMART Digital initiative.

“There is no doubt in my mind that this ICTEL Expo 2016 will further offer a platform for corporate organisations seeking to build partnerships for enhanced profitability in the sector.

“It is also a veritable opportunity for government and private sector operators to meet and articulate policies that would boost the productivity of ICT sector in Nigeria and create more jobs”.