We shall continue to strive to improve the performance of our rapidly-evolving industry, by encouraging more investments in the industry, engaging stakeholders on issues of common interest, and charting viable courses for the growth and development of the industry/economy.
The Chairman of the Board of, Nigerian Communications Commission, Senator Olabiyi Durojaiye, while speaking during the stakeholder sensitisation workshop on the implications of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AFCFTA) initiative for the communications industry in Lagos, recently.
Senator Olabiyi Durojaiye said to provide the keynote address at this august gathering of important stakeholders in the Nigerian Communications industry. We are participating in a task that is not only crucial, but also necessary for achieving the rapid socioeconomic development agenda of the Government of our country.
He noted that we have indeed assembled here today, in order to contribute our own quota to the debate and discourse around the subject matter of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), with particular emphasis on its implications for the Nigerian Communications Industry. We held a similar exercise in Kano last week, and I was quite impressed by the quality of organization of the event and the very rich contributions that came from participants. I believe that the Lagos exercise will further lift the bar of performance.
According to him, for the next two days of this Sensitization Workshop, the commercial city of Lagos will host us as we engage with stakeholders, with a view towards crafting achievable recommendations and solutions that will guarantee positive growth, development and prosperity for our industry, the Nigerian economy, and the African continent.
“In line with the Federal Government’s objectives, the Nigerian Communications Commission is strongly committed to ensuring that the sector continues to improve on its contribution to GDP and by extension the Nigerian economy. Through its direct contribution to the GDP and the indirect contribution to the performance of other sectors, the Telecommunication sector is indeed a facilitator of economic development.
“At the Nigerian Communications Commission, we recognize that the Continental Free Trade Area arrangement means that we now have access to extend Communications services to 1.2 billion people across the African continent. With a larger proportion of this population made up of young people, whose hunger for data and mobile services continues to grow, there is no limit to achievement by innovative operators/investors in terms of business opportunities.
The Chairman stated that just the way we recognize the opportunities for investors in the African market, we also know that there are challenges not to say threats. He pointed out that operators and investors within the Communications ecosystem must fully appreciate these dynamics, in order to ensure that they prepare adequately for them. Hence, the need for this Sensitization Workshop, he added.
“At the end of the workshops, we expect to come out more informed about the AfCFTA Initiative, and better prepared to take advantage of the opportunities that lie ahead. Indeed, we believe that with good planning and implementation, Nigeria and the African continent will be better off with the Continental Free Trade Area arrangement. This is the reason why President Muhammadu Buhari signed the AfCFTA Agreement on 7th July, 2019.
He pointed out that great emphasis on the youths:-We should endeavour, as the NCC and DBI are already doing, to identify trained and equipped talented Nigerian youths both at home and in Diaspora with Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg kind of aptitude to invests software & Apps that will make other countries import from us:
- We in Africa should adopt and eventually evolve our own indigenous programme of development, but if we must adopt any of existing Models, China`s example by which they transformed their economy from third World level, in the 1950`s to number two and arguably Number one economy power in the world within 70 years is the preferred model. There are also smaller countries that are doing wonders such as UAE(Dubai) and Rwanda. In 1997 CBN Introduced the West African Clearing House Arrangement which can also be adopted.
- Investors both Local and Foreign should appreciate the efforts of the Buhari Administration in improving on overall security and ease of doing business.In return investors are expected to bear the best interest of consumers of their products in mind in all their activities and ensure generation of youth employment.