The Minister of Communications, Barrister Adebayo Shittu has said that the Federal Government is planning to set up a communication bank that would support operators and firms in the sector to access cheap funds.
Speaking on Friday in Lagos during a visit to computer village, the Minister revealed that his ministry and the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, are working together to realize the establishment of a communication bank.
According to him the ICT sector is faring well, contributing around 10 per cent of the nation’s GDP, adding that it would do better when operators can access fund at favorable interest rate.
Shittu said the development of ICT sector is high on the agenda of the Government which is sparing no efforts to promote and facilitate the industry.
According to him the visit was part the steps to grow the sector.
He said the latest plan of government to grow the ICT sector was the National ICT Strategic Roadmap 2017-2020.
He informed that the plan which was built on previous ones, seeks to ensure that ICT sector becomes a main pillar of the national economy and Nigeria rightly positions itself as a regional ICT hub.
” The plan contains strategic areas of intervention that range from the development of a comprehensive broadband strategy for Nigeria and a review of the legal and regulatory ICT environment to an institutional overhaul.
“It also includes the establishment of a human resources strategy intended to meet the needs of the industry, the international promotion of Nigeria as credible ICT destination, the creation of an ICT literate nation, the encouragement of the adoption of ICT services everywhere, implementation of the e-government strategy and the strengthening of the cyber security framework”, he said.
Shittu also said that the ministry adopted the policy of optimizing ICT local content and empowering local businesses in the sector, thereby stemming potential capital flight.
He noted that the ministry is collaborating with the National Assembly to enact a holistic law on local content that will among other things criminalize breaches of the nation’s local content policy.
Speaking at the event, President, Computer and Allied Products Dealers Association of Nigeria, CAPDAN, Ojikutu Ahmed Adeniyi said his association is very willing to partner with the Federal Government to grow the ICT sector and the economy of the nation at large.
Adeniyi who noted that the Ikeja computer villagers records daily transactions in excess of N2billion said members of CAPDAN are not just traders but also made up professionals who are capable contributing in the area of research among others.
Further he said his association which is the largest hub in Africa deserve more attention in order to contribute its quota to the development o the economy.