26th April, 2017
A civil society group, the Transparency Advocacy Initiative Nigeria, says the country loses 3.8 billion dollars annually to the importation of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) goods and services.
Mr Adodo Solomon, the Publicity Secretary of the initiative, disclosed this to newsmen on Wednesday in Abuja.
According to Solomon, most of the goods imported can also be produced in Nigeria, if Nigerian youths are empowered.
“We can say that Nigeria presently loses over 3.8 billion dollars to the importation of ICT goods and services; these are goods and services that can be developed in Nigeria.
“If the proper partnerships are initiated, if the potential of the Nigerian youths are tapped into, this can be achieved.
“We are aware that the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) in its e-Nigeria programme last year invited youths, foreign producers and stakeholders on the field to begin production of ICT products locally.
“We believe that by the time this is pursued, the statistics would have dropped to 2.5 billion dollars.’’
Solomon commended NITDA for fighting against the importation of fake substandard ICT products that had pervaded the Nigerian market.
“Nigeria is not a dumping ground and the best standards must be maintained. Therefore, the efforts being made to put in place regulation for ICT products/services must be sustained.
“NITDA’s strengthened collaboration with industry leaders, start-ups and young Nigerians fused with the call on manufacturers of ICT products and service providers to domesticate their production is laudable,’’ he said.
He urged organisations to empower Nigerian youths to enable them make global impact, saying that Nigeria had the manpower and resources to embark on ICT production.