Nigeria’s economy needs ‘soft rebooting’ — Pantami

The Minister for Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Pantami, said that Nigeria needed reboot its ecosystem with digital technology survive the present regressive economic outlook by COVID-19.

The minister said this the 2nd edition of the Re-Ignite Public Affairs Dialogue Webinar Series held in partnership with Businessday Media.

The theme of the virtual event was “Nigeria at 60 – Rebooting Nigeria’s Economy the Way Forward”.

Pantami, who was represented Technical Assistant on Info-Tech, Dr Olufemi Adeluyi, said that since the global lockdown earlier in the year, digital commerce has become the most efficient growth area in the country.

He said that digital commerce provided the world with new ways of doing things as encapsulated in the ‘New Normal’ pseudo phrase.

The minister said that the digital economy policy and strategy which was hinged on eight pillars help move the Nigerian economy forward.

“The eight pillars includes developmental , digital literacy and skills, solid infrastructure, service infrastructure, digital services development and promotion.

“Others are soft infrastructure, digital society and emerging technology, indigenous content development and adoption pillar,” he said.

Pantami added that the country’s economy needed a soft rebooting which could only be achieved through an economy driven by digital technology.

Mrs Adia Sowho, Managing Director, Mines Nigeria, a machine learning-powered digital credit platform, said there was a challenge maintaining a tech business in Nigeria with rising cost and revenue under pressure from devaluation and .

She said that the telecommunications sector in Nigeria was struggling in spite of the perception that they were making money.

Sowho urged the government exploit the digital space in carrying out its major activities boost the economy.

“The country also needs regulations that will make it easy do digital-related businesses and survive,” she said.

Also, Mr Obi Asika, Chief Executive Officer of Dragon Africa and Storm Productions, said that there was need for connected thinking and collaboration in the Nigerian technology sector.

Asika also noted that collaboration between the public and private sector aid progress in the Nigerian technology sector.

“The key to a robust digital economy in Nigeria includes education, startup ecosystem, digital infrastructure and platforms, among others,” he said

Mr Najim Animashaun, a Policy Analyst and General Counsel at Gulf of Guinea Consulting, said that the Nigerian Government needed to capitalise on the digital economy to derive positive results.

“There is need for government to diversify the economy to favour the ICT sector more because of its promises towards improving the Nigerian economy,” Animashaun said.

NAN reports that Re-ignite Public Affairs is a strategy driven research- based solution provider in the public affairs space for business and government.

The firm provides services that help to improve governance, and enhance relationship between the business community and the different arms of government and its agencies.(NAN)