Business

Telecoms’ contribution to GDP hits N3.7trn in Q2

The telecommunications sub-sector bolstered the country’s Gross Domestic Products (GDP) by N3.7 trillion in the second quarter of this year. This represented a 2.6 per cent decline when compared with the N3.8 trillion it contributed in the same period in 2020.

 

However, compared with Q1’21 when the sector’s contribution stood at N3 trillion, the Q2 figure was a 23.3 per cent growth. With this, the telecommunications sub-sector accounted for 9.4 per cent of the aggregate nominal GDP for the economy in Q2, which according to data released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), stood at N39 trillion.

 

The NBS data showed that the Information and Communications Technology sector, led by telecommunications, remained one of the major drivers of the economy.

 

According to NBS, the ICT sector, which is one of the main drivers of non-oil growth is composed of the four activities of telecommunications and information services; publishing; motion picture, sound recording, and music production; and broadcasting.

 

While ICT’s total nominal contributions to GDP in the second quarter stood at N4.8 trillion, telecommunications alone accounted for 77 per cent of the total figure.

 

For the quarter, the ICT sector’s percentage contribution to nominal GDP stood at 12.22 per cent which is slightly lower than the 14.06 per cent recorded in the same quarter of 2020 but   potenhigher than the 9.91 per cent contributed in the preceding quarter.

 

The NBS report revealed that the non-oil sector, led by Trade and ICT contributed 92.58 per cent to the nation’s GDP in the first quarter. “During the quarter, the sector was driven mainly by growth in Trade, Information and Communication (Telecommunication), Transportation (Road Transport), Electricity, Agriculture (Crop Production) and Manufacturing (Food, Beverage & Tobacco), reflecting the easing of movement, business and economic activity across the country relative to the same period a year earlier,”

 

NBS stated. Reacting to the latest NBS report, the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Pantami, said the growing contribution of the ICT sector to the GDP was a result of the commitment of the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari, to the development of the digital economy.

 

According to him, the 16 National Policies developed by the ministry, the 1,667 projects and programmes, the large scale digital skills, and general capacity building efforts, stakeholder engagement and creation of an enabling environment have all played an  role in this achievement. “The support of President Buhari has contributed immensely to the impressive developments in the sector.

 

. The unprecedented contribution of ICT to Nigeria’s GDP can also be attributed to the dynamic and results-oriented leadership of the sector, which has been acknowledged and appreciated by a wide spectrum of the stakeholders in the sector, both locally and internationally. For example, Mr. Houlin Zhao, the Secretary-General of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) commended the Minister for Nigeria’s “accelerated digital transformation”.

 

Similarly, the Chairman of the United States-Nigeria Council (USNC) also commended him for the “commitment to diversifying Nigeria’s great economy through digital technology and innovation.” He said the GDP report had shown how critical the ICT sector is to the growth of the country’s digital economy and, by extension, the general economy.

 

He called on all sectors to take advantage of the Federal Government’s new focus on the digital economy to enable and improve their processes through the use of ICTs. This, he said, would enhance the output of all the sectors of the economy and further boost Nigeria’s GDP.

 

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