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Mobile Ecosystem to Worth Over $50B to West Africa Economy by 2022 – GSMA

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The mobile industry in West Africa is forecast to contribute more than $50 billion annually to the region’s economy by 2022, according to a new GSMA study published yesterday at the ‘Mobile 360 – West Africa’ event being held in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire.

The new report, The Mobile Economy: West Africa 2018, calculates that the region’s mobile ecosystem contributed $37 billion in value last year, equivalent to 6.5 per cent of GDP1, and will grow to $51 billion (7.7 per cent of GDP) within five years. The economic contribution over this period will be spurred by strong subscriber growth and the move to mobile broadband networks and services.

“Today’s report demonstrates the vital role West Africa’s mobile ecosystem is playing in driving economic growth and empowering citizens across the region, as well as in delivering against many of the targets of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.

However, further work is required as more than half of West Africa’s citizens are not yet connected to a mobile service, excluding them from the socio-economic benefits that mobile delivers,” said John Giusti, Chief Regulatory Officer at the GSMA.

Large Youth Populations Driving Subscriber Growth

At the end of 2017, there were 176 million unique mobile subscribers2 across the West Africa sub-region, which comprises the 15 members of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS)3. This is equivalent to a penetration rate of 47 per cent of the region’s population, up from just 28 per cent at the start of the decade.

Strong subscriber growth is forecast to continue over the coming years; 72 million additional mobile subscribers are expected to be added in West Africa by 2025, lifting subscriber penetration to 54 per cent. Much of this growth is attributable to the demographic situation across the region, as large youth populations are expected to take out mobile subscriptions as they reach adulthood. According to the report, more than 40 per cent of the population in many countries across Sub-Saharan Africa are below the age of 16.

Meanwhile, the transition to mobile broadband in West Africa is being driven by the expansion of 3G and 4G networks, lower data tariffs and the increasing affordability of smartphones.

3G networks now cover two-thirds of the regional population and 4G adoption is also rising rapidly. As of March 2018, there were 29 live 4G (LTE) networks in nine countries across West Africa, six of which have launched in the last year. 3G and 4G together accounted for 36 per cent of West African mobile connections in 2017 and are forecast to rise to 94 per cent of the total by 2025.

Local operators are expected to spend $8 billion (capex) over the next two years building out and upgrading their networks.

Mobile Powering Economic Growth and Jobs

The expected increase in the mobile ecosystem’s contribution to the West Africa economy over the next five years will be due primarily to productivity gains.

The greater availability of mobile broadband networks, for example, will enable improved access to information and services, which in turn drives efficiencies in business processes across many industries, including finance and health.

Alongside the economic contribution, the mobile ecosystem also supports jobs and contributes to public funding.

Last year, the mobile industry in West Africa provided employment to more than 200,000 people, predominantly in the retailing and distribution of services and handsets, and made an annual tax contribution to the public finances of governments of $4 billion.

“Connecting a new generation of mobile subscribers across West Africa requires a new era of collaboration between industry and governments in order to implement policies that encourage network expansion, innovation and affordability.

In addition to the work of operators to expand and improve networks, significant effort from governments at all levels is needed to create the right conditions for continued investment,” added Giusti.

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NCC to Sanction Illegal Auto Tracking Solutions Providers

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The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has warned against illegal operation by automated vehicular tracking (AVT) operators, saying it would invoke sanctions against anyone operating without licenses.

Emilia Nwokoro, Enugu Zonal Controller of the Commission, disclosed that it was illegal for people to operate vehicular tracking services without registering with the commission, stressing that registration would help regulate their services.

Speaking during the unsealing of the D-Tech Multi Services, she stated that the commission’s enforcement procedures empowered it to seal off AVT services operating without license, explaining that D-Tech Multi Services was sealed off on October 31, last, following the refusal of its managers to regularize their operations with the commission.

She explained that the aim of registering the operators was to enhance security of services and ensure that vehicle owners deal with genuine auto- trackers in the state and called on members of the public to furnish her office with information concerning illegal operators in the state.

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Africa Code Week frenzy hits Nigerian teachers, youths

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Deputy Governor of Enugu State, Mrs. Cecelia Ezeilo with teachers at the ACW teacher training in Enugu, recently.

Africa Code Week (ACW), a continent wide initiative of SAP, supported by partners such as Google, UNESCO, BMZ, Camden Trust, Cape Town Science Centre is set to run for 2 weeks from today the 15th to 26th October, in schools, communities and ICT centres across Nigeria.

 

It’s envisaged that hundreds of thousands of students will be trained on coding language during the 2-week period.

 

Training will be carried out in many States across the country as many teachers have been ramped up through a series of TTTs carried out by SAP and some of the ACW Network Partner Organizations (NPO).

 

Notably, in Edo and Enugu states where TTTs recently took place in August and September respectively, the events were organized by SAP and coordinated by ACW NPO Coderina.

 

The governments of these states have already thrown their full weight behind the program with a common goal of ensuring that all students in post primary education are introduced to coding during these 2 weeks.

The training session for teachers

 

They believe that success will be achieved through a combination of plans put in place by the government to leverage the newly acquired knowledge of the teachers and support from NPOs.

 

In Edo State, for instance, the government working through the Chairman of Edo State Post Primary Education Board (PPEB) Mr. Gabriel Oiboh and the Director of ICT agency Ms. Yuwa Napps,  have set aside 38 ICT centers in schools across the state to cater for students in schools where there’s lack of or shortage of computers.

 

The government ICT center with over 300 computers will also be used to train students in batches, with students transported to the center by government vehicles.

 

The approach is also similar in Enugu State where a team led by the SSA to the Governor on Development Aid, Dr. Kingsley Udeh and his ream, acting under the instructions of the Executive Governor, His Excellency, Rt. Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, plan to reach every student in post primary education and ensure that no child is left behind.

 

The Governor in his address delivered on his behalf by the State’s Deputy Governor, Mrs. Cecelia Ezeilo at the ACW teacher training in Enugu, stated that youths are the engine of economic growth in the State hence digital literacy powers this engine.

 

“That is why my Administration has sought and attracted to the State this largest digital literacy initiative ever organized on the African continent”.

Some of the teachers who participated in the training

 

“Enugu State Government is committed to working with stakeholders towards achieving sustainable and inclusive economic growth through digital literacy.

 

“This software coding training therefore comes as a welcome complement to the various ICT development initiates of the State Government.

 

“We will want to work with SAP and partners to infuse software coding into our school curriculum, in line with our ICT policy”, the State Government said.

 

According to the National Ambassador of Africa Code Week Olajide Ademola Ajayi at the TTT in Enugu, “It is highly anticipated that government interest in the program will help move the needle on Nigeria’s Digital Literacy drive.”

 

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MTN Shines, Bags Five Awards at NTITA 2018

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Tobe Okigbo, Corporate Relations Executive, MTN Nigeria, cluching the Awards

MTN Nigeria over the weekend emerged the biggest winner of the night at the 2nd edition of the Nigeria Tech Innovation & Telecom Awards (NTITA), 2018, held by the Instinct Wave and Association of Telecom Companies of Nigeria (ATCON) at the Oriental Hotel, Ikoyi, Lagos.

 

The ICT Company carted five (5) awards – Telecom Company of the year, Social Impact Award, Digital Transformation Award, Customer Experience Award and Telcom CEO of the year awards.

 

Tobechukwu Okigbo, Corporate Relations Executive, MTN Nigeria, who was one of the executives present for the company, received the awards and expressed the organization’s gratitude to the organizers and the independent judges.

 

“We are honored to not only receive these but to have been considered nominees in such lofty categories.

 

“MTN Nigeria has always and will continue to strive for excellence in all frontiers.

 

“Recognition for the work that thousands of us come together for every day is incentive to do more, create more and be more,” he stated.

 

Akin Naphtal, Group Chief Executive Officer, Instinct Wave, explained that the prestigious award has quickly become the benchmark for outstanding performance and a symbol of excellence in leadership in the highly competitive technology industry.

 

The award which is in its 2nd edition, has judges formed from an independent panel of industry experts recognizes organizational performances products and services, innovations, executives.

 

 

 

 

 

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