Pantami attributes ICT sector performance to Buhari’s support for digital economy

TECH DIGEST – The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Pantami, has attributed the consistent positive performance of the ICT sector to the support of the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari for the Digital Economy sector.

He expressed satisfaction that the ICT sector has retained its role as the industry with the highest growth rate of all the main sectors of the Nigerian economy in the first quarter of 2021 (Q1 2021) based on the latest Gross Domestic Product (GDP) report released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).

In a statement signed by his Technical Assistant (Information Technology) Dr. Femi Adeluyi , the minister observed that the Federal Government has provided an enabling environment for the ICT sector to thrive, through the development and implementation of policies like the National Digital Economy Policy for a Digital Nigeria, Nigerian National Broadband Plan and the Revised National Digital Identity Policy for SIM Card Registration, amongst others.

Pantami noted that the GDP report has shown that the ICT sector continues to catalyze the growth and diversification of the economy and commended the Chief Executive Officers of the parastatals under the ministry and stakeholders on the consistent performance of the sector and encourages them to continue supporting the policies of the Federal Government.

He stated that Post and Courier Services grew by 2.53 per cent in Q1 2021 adding that these services are under the supervision of the Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy but currently listed under the transportation sector in the GDP Report.

According to the NBS, “Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew by 0.51 per cent (year-on-year) in real terms in the first quarter of 2021, marking two consecutive quarters of growth following the negative growth rates recorded in the second and third quarters of 2020”.

The report noted that in terms of contribution to aggregate GDP, the oil sector accounted for 9.25 per cent of aggregate real GDP in Q1 2021, while the non-oil sector accounted for 90.75 per cent of aggregate GDP in the first quarter of 2021.

The Bureau also noted that the “growth in the non-oil sector was driven mainly by the Information and Communication (Telecommunication) sector while other drivers include Agriculture (Crop Production); Manufacturing (Food, Beverage & Tobacco); Real Estate; Construction and Human Health & Social Services”.

It is worthy of note that the ICT sector grew by 6.47 per cent in Q1 2021, making it the fastest-growing significant sector of the Nigerian economy.