Mallam Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, Director General of National Information Technology Development Agency, (NITDA), has that said the Agency is implementing key policies to harness and strength the Nigeria Digital Ecosystem.
He stated this at the webinar session organized by the Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) in collaboration with the National Association of Software and Service Companies in India (NASSCOM).
Abdullahi while speaking on the theme; ‘Nigeria-India Partnership towards a Structured ICT Market and Digital Economy’, noted that the collaboration is an amazing opportunity for creating a viable ICT Market and Digital Economy in both Nigeria and India.
“We hugely invest in four areas to strengthen our tech innovation ecosystem; these are: Human Capital Development, Infrastructure, Demand Creation and Funding for Startups”, he disclosed.
He further corroborated his claims by stating that Lagos alone has more than 400 startups valued at over $2 billion.
“At NITDA we focus on creating market for digital economy through implementing groundbreaking initiatives to create innovation ecosystem and entrepreneurial capacity in our country”, he said.
This, according to the NITDA Boss, is in line with the Presidential mandate given to the Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy.
He also stated that Nigeria is leading in terms of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in the technology sector, and this he attributed to the nation’s population and volume of usage.
“We have the largest young population, Internet users and mobile subscriptions, and we are second-highest tech-startup density on the continent”, he added.
The DG explained further that with Nigeria’s population both countries have promising potentials to create and capture value in digital economy.
He argued that Nigeria is towing the same line with the Indian tech sector on this positive trajectory.
He also identified three distinctive attributes that fostered the growth of ICT in India; firstly, lowering the cost of mobile data, secondly, implementing a national identification program to provide digital identity for all, and thirdly, embracing digital payments.
“Nigerian government is vigorously implementing similar policies to structure its ICT Market and Digital Economy”, he added.
Mallam Abdullahi believes that Abuja is becoming an emerging tech hub and having a viable innovation ecosystem in Abuja is critical to digital economy market creation in the city and Nigeria at large.
He is optimistic that this partnership will focus on opportunity to learn from India to build market and create prosperity for Nigerians.
The NITDA Boss charged the collaborating team to ensure the partnership is geared towards enhancing Nigeria to become a digital economy.
He is also confident that Nigeria has a competitive edge to compete with any country globally.
He commended the efforts of ACCI and NASSCOM for the opportunity they are opening up to Nigerians.
Stating his believe that the partnership will help strengthen digital ecosystem and create prosperity for the country.
Dr. Dan-Azumi Mohammed Ibrahim, Director General of National Office for Technology Acquisition and Promotion (NOTAP), in his goodwill message expressed optimism that the collaboration would enable sustainable development and also bring the level of illiteracy to its barest minimum in the country.
Engr. Olanrewaju Onigbogi, who is head, ICT department of M-P Infrastructure, reiterated the NITDA DG’s submission that ICT has evolved in Nigeria.
He also agreed that the use of ICT has helped organizations achieve growth, making them become efficient, effective, innovative and globally competitive.