A recent Groupe Spécial Mobile Association (GSMA) digital economy report has cast a spotlight on the contributions of Nigeria’s telecom sector to the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), highlighting its role in driving economic growth and development.

Released amidst growing interest in the Nigerian telecom landscape, the report provides a comprehensive analysis of the sector’s impact on the country’s economic metrics.

Key findings reveal that in 2023 alone, the telecom sector directly contributed eight percent to Nigeria’s total GDP. However, when factoring in the wider ICT industries’ value-added contributions, this figure surged to 13.5 percent.

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Beyond numbers, the report delved into the intricacies of the telecom sector’s influence on various economic sectors. It elucidated how the mobile industry’s cumulative contribution to Nigeria’s GDP reached an estimated N20 trillion in 2023, accompanied by substantial tax revenue contributions totalling N2.8 trillion. Such figures further highlight the sector’s role in driving fiscal revenues and national economic stability.

Moreover, the report shed light on the transformative potential of the telecom sector in enabling digitalisation across key industries. Projections indicate that by 2028, sectors such as agriculture, manufacturing, transport, trade and government will witness a GDP increase of approximately two percentage points.

The surge is expected to generate an additional N1.6 trillion in tax revenue, marking a significant milestone in Nigeria’s quest for economic diversification and resilience.

“The telecommunications sector is the backbone of the digital economy. We have a strong appreciation of the fact that if we are able to improve the business environment and invest in the sector, we can continue to improve the level of productivity.

“A country like Nigeria has significant opportunities to contribute to the world, but this is impossible without diversifying the economy,” Dr Bosun Tijani, Minister of Communications, Innovation and Digital Economy, stated.

The report also highlighted the role of 5G networks in enhancing operational efficiency across sectors through real-time data transmission and remote monitoring.

It spotlighted the potential of digitalisation in sectors like manufacturing and trade, with the capacity to add trillions in industry value and generate substantial employment opportunities and tax revenues.

Despite these revelations, the report also acknowledged the challenges faced by the telecom sector, particularly its capital-intensive nature.

The report’s findings beckon a clarion call for concerted efforts to leverage the telecom sector’s potential as a catalyst for economic advancement. With the right policies and investments, Nigeria is poised to harness the full spectrum of opportunities offered by its vibrant telecom landscape, driving inclusive growth and prosperity for all.

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