Professor Umar Danbatta, the executive vice chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), highlighted significant strides in Nigeria’s telecommunications sector following the inaugural Nigerian Telecommunication Indigenous Content Expo (NTICE).
At the ongoing NTICE 2023 event, Engineer Ubale Maska, Executive Commissioner of Technical Services at NCC, conveyed Danbatta’s message. Danbatta noted that the policy implemented after the first NTICE event, which banned the import of whole-body SIM cards, has yielded substantial economic benefits.This ban not only alleviated pressure on foreign exchange demand but also resulted in local SIM card manufacturers generating more than N55 billion in revenue.
Furthermore, the ban sparked direct and indirect job creation, amplifying the positive impact on the economy.
Danbatta emphasized that Nigeria’s telecom sector plays a pivotal role in the country’s socio-economic growth, as exemplified by its remarkable achievements.
The sector’s contribution to GDP rose from 12.45% in Q4 2020 to 14.13% in Q1 2023, aiding Nigeria’s recovery from recession.
Highlighting its global standing, Danbatta noted that Nigeria leaped ahead in the 5G race, with revenues exceeding USD $820 million from 3.5GHz Spectrum band licenses granted to operators in 2021 and 2022.
This achievement positioned Nigeria as a 5G pioneer among European, African, and Middle Eastern nations.The telecom sector’s commitment to improved Quality of Service and Experience has been unwavering, maintaining stable tariffs despite escalating service provision costs.
To sustain this progress, embracing indigenous content and value creation within the telecom value chain is crucial.The Nigeria Office for Development of Indigenous Telecoms Sector (NODITS), established in 2021, has made strides in manufacturing, human capacity development, research, and software and services creation.
The NTICE event has become a flagship platform for promoting indigenous content, aligned with the NCC’s strategic goals.Moreover, efforts to shield fiber infrastructure from damages led to the incentivization of Corrugated Optical Duct (COD) manufacturing.
The Commission remains dedicated to supporting Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) and innovators, offering angel investments, research and development support, investor exposure, and sponsorship for tech events.
In conclusion, Danbatta highlighted that NTICE 2023 symbolizes the celebration of these accomplishments, epitomizing Nigeria’s spirit of innovation and ingenuity.