Ways we’re harnessing, strengthening Nigeria digital ecosystem —DG NITDA

THE Director-General of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Mr Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, has said that the agency is implementing key policies to harness and strengthen the Nigeria Digital Ecosystem.

He stated this at the webinar session organised 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 technology 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 him, 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 programme to provide digital identity for all and thirdly, embracing digital payments.

“Nigerian government is vigorously implementing similar policies1 to structure its ICT Market and Digital Economy,” he added.

Inuwa said he 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 commended the efforts of ACCI and NASSCOM for the opportunity they are opening up to Nigerians.

Dr. Dan-Azumi Mohammed Ibrahim, the Director-General of the 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.

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