(Ecofin Agency) - The Nigerian government wants to bring the Internet penetration rate to 90% by 2025. Mobile operators in the country are jumping on the opportunity to win more market share and solidify their customer base.
South African telecom group MTN announced plans to invest 640 billion naira ($1.5 billion) in Nigeria over the next three years to improve people's access to broadband. MTN CEO Ralph Mupita made the announcement on Monday, June 21, at the end of a three-day working visit to Nigeria during which he met with the President Muhammadu Buhari, Vice President Oluyemi Oluleke Osinbajo, Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Ali Pantami, and Executive Vice President of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Umar Garba Danbatta.
During the audience he granted to the MTN Group delegation on June 18, Muhammadu Buhari, who was already urging the telecom company to continue to support the government's efforts in developing connectivity by extending telecom coverage to Nigerians in unserved and underserved areas, also insisted on lowering the cost of data and other services. He also urged MTN Group to invest more in its corporate social responsibility programs and support research and development that will improve services in Nigeria.
MTN Group's investment in Nigeria is in line with the National Broadband Plan 2020-2025 adopted by the Federal Government last year, which aims to increase the penetration rate of quality Internet connectivity to 90%. It is also in line with the company's "Ambition 2025" development strategy, which is to become a "leading provider of digital solutions for Africa's progress."
With improved Internet access for millions of Nigerians, MTN Group is certain to further increase the country's financial contribution - which accounts for nearly 35% of its annual performance - to its revenues. For the government, this will ensure that no one is left behind in the country's digital transformation.