The Executive Vice Chairman( EVC) Nigerian Communications Commission( NCC), Prof. Umar Danbatta has said there was a need to embrace indigenous content and value creation within the telecommunications value chain to prevent hikes in telecom tariffs.
The EVC made the call on Wednesday in his welcome address at the second edition of the Nigerian Telecommunications Indigenous Content Expo( NTICE) 2023, themed: “Harnessing Indigenous Content for Economic Growth; Networking to Boost Investment” in Lagos.
He said the commission is committed to supporting Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) and Innovators to promote our talented young persons at local and international technology events.
According to Danbatta,” It is also important to note that while Quality of Service and Quality of Experience in telecommunications services in Nigeria have continued to improve, tariffs have remained stable notwithstanding the increase in cost-of-service provision to the telecom operators.
“ In order to sustain and further improve Quality of Service and Quality of Experience in telecommunications services in Nigeria, we must embrace indigenous content and value creation within the telecoms value chain, otherwise, an increase in telecoms tariff will be inevitable”.
He said the telecommunications sector is home to two of the most valuable listed companies in Nigeria with a collective market capitalization in excess of N10.45 trillion.
Danbatta recalled that the Commission in 2021 and 2022, generated revenue in excess of USD$820m from the auction and grant of 3.5GHz Spectrum band licences to three operators to boost the deployment of Fifth Generation (5G) services in Nigeria.
Which according to the EVC, has placed Nigeria on the global 5G map ahead of many countries in Europe, Africa, and the Middle East.
He further stated that” Without any doubt, the Nigerian Telecoms Sector is amongst the biggest contributors to the socio-economic growth of the country, as evidenced by the numerous achievements of the sector.
“ It is not out of place to mention that the sector’s performance was instrumental to lifting Nigeria out of recession with a 12.45% contribution to the GDP in Q4 2020. This figure increased to 14.13% as of Q1 2023.”
The Professor said NTICE is one of the achievements of the commission through the Nigeria Office for Development of Indigenous Telecoms Sector (NODITS).
“It has served not only to promote Pillar number 5 (Strategic Partnering) of the Strategic Management Plan SMP 2020- 2024 of the Commission but has also become the flagship indigenous content event for the industry.
“When we created the Nigeria Office for Development of Indigenous Telecoms Sector (NODITS) as a Special Purpose Vehicle under the Commission to drive the National Policy for Promotion of Indigenous Content in the Nigerian Telecommunications Sector in July 2021, the Office was given four areas of focus: Manufacturing, Human Capacity, Research & Development (R&D) and Software & Services development for the telecoms sector.
“Nigeria with its rich history of innovation, resilience, and creativity as well as our diverse culture, talents, and perspectives has birthed solutions that uniquely cater for our challenges and aspirations. The NTICE 2023 platform is a celebration of these achievements, a testament to the Nigerian spirit of ingenuity,” he said.
In his opening remarks, the Team Lead NODITS, Engr. Babagana Digima said the commission is
committed to fostering homegrown solutions that not only drive economic prosperity but also propel the nation towards a future brimming with endless possibilities.
“In an era where connectivity is the backbone of progress, where the digital realm intertwines with every facet of our lives, our nation’s telecom industry stands as a beacon of advancement. It is not just about communication, but about empowerment, education, healthcare, commerce, and beyond.
“As we gather here today, we recognize that the key to unlocking the immense potential lies in our ability to harness the wealth of indigenous content, to leverage our unique perspectives and talents, and to channel them towards the greater good,” he said.