Barrister Adebayo Shittu, Minister of Communications has said Nigeria is the centre of economic activities and remains the major investment destination in Africa for investors in Information Communication Technology (ICT).
The Minister who said this during the African Investment Forum (AIF) held in Gulf Information Technology Exhibition (GITEX 2016) in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE) called on tech investors to explore stakes in Nigeria.
Shittu says that investors should tap into opportunities in ICT ecosystem in Nigeria considering the country’s huge market and abundant resources, while explaining that the country is the centre of economic and ICT development in the West African sub-region.
“Nigeria has a population of about 180 million people, which is more than the total population of the remaining 15 nations in the West African sub –region. Our nation is a huge market and the centre of economic activities in the sub-region as well as ICT development in Africa. Major investors in the ICT sector should not miss these opportunities of mutual benefits which Nigeria presents,” the Nigerian Minister told the GITEX 2016 attendees.
Also speaking at the Forum, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, Director General of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), called on ICT investors and entrepreneurs seeking for high returns on investment to have Nigeria as a strong ally.
Pantami also told the GITEX 2016 forum that, “the business environment in Nigeria is favourable. Our current administration recently formed a Presidential Commission to significantly improve our Ease of Doing Business rank. Efforts are also underway in the Nigerian Senate to review the tax laws to aid the presidential effort to make Nigeria more investor-friendly.”
According to the NITDA chief, “we run a free market economy in Nigeria that encourages and incentivizes investment in the country. The current infrastructural development effort and significant security improvement brought about by the current administration of President Muhammadu Buhari will make it easy for your business to be up and running within a short period of time.”
Additionally, Mrs. Winifred Ekanem Oyo-Ita, Head of the Civil Service, said the Nigerian government has shown commitment to human capacity building through agencies like NITDA to ensure the readiness of the indigenous labour force to provide required skills needed by foreign investors which will encourage potential foreign investment flow.
Oyo-Ita told investors that the present administration of President Muhammadu Buhari is ready to promote ICT development and deployment in the country.
While highlighting the investment potentials in his State, Professor Sonny Tyoden, Deputy Governor of Plateau State, adds that “our state has passed through periods of tragic conflicts but that is in the past as we invite you to join other investors in exploring the great potential in mining, the hospitality industry and huge market for innovation underscored by large numbers of educated and talented youth population.”
He further disclosed that Plateau State is planning to establish an ICT Park in Jos, the capital of the State, adding that the state government is ready to partner with world class investors in the project.
The AIF attracted ICT stakeholders and investors from across the world including those of African countries like Morocco, Tanzania, and Egypt.
GITEX is the largest annual Information Communication Technology trade show, exhibition, conferences that holds in Dubai, United Arab Emirates at the Dubai World Trade Centre. It attracts over 150,000 technology professionals, investors and enterprise leaders, public sector officials, tech innovators and entrepreneurs from over 140 countries.