The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr. Okechukwu Enelamah, has said Nigerian digital economy is projected to generate $88billion and create up to three million jobs in the next three years.
Enelamah who spoke at the “Invest In Nigeria” Summit – Silicon Valley – Palo Alto, California, USA, said Nigerian government was resolute, almost to near obsession, in creating an enabling environment where digital economy opportunities are not just theoretical but become real.
The Nigerian delegation led by the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, includes senior government officials, regulators and leading companies in the area of innovation.
Enelamah disclosed that the technology sector has recorded some good strides – more than doubling in size over the past nine years, now accounting for 9% of our GDP.
He recalled some recent landmark investments in the sector: “From the $20million fundraise in Andela, to $10million fundraise in Flutterwave, to the $7million in SureRemit via a blockchain ICO, $1.1million in Piggybank.
A statement yesterday by Bisi Daniels, Strategy and Communications Adviser to the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment said the investors were assured about the entrepreneurial spirit of young Nigerians.
According to the minister, “Today we have brought you some of our best from the government, from the private sector, technology companies, local finance, policy makers. I hope this leaves no doubt as to our commitment to establishing a winning partnership with you in Nigeria’s technology ecosystem.”
“The primary purpose of the visit is towards attracting investments into Nigeria’s burgeoning technology space.
“It follows the Vice President’s inauguration last month of the Advisory Group on Technology and Creativity, established by President Muhammadu Buhari as part of an effort to boost industrial policies and competitiveness for the country.
“The committee has a good number of private sector members with roots in one technology operations or the other. As our source would reveal, the Vice President’s entourage comprises a number of tech-savvy entrepreneurs from that advisory board.
The trip, according to him, was designed to showcase to the world the progress and strides in the country’s technology, innovation and creative space by Nigerian start-ups and entertainment industry practitioners.
At the meeting held on Tuesday in Silicon Valley, the team interacted with scores of Nigerians working with Google.
He later met with a series of key technology investors and also visited the headquarters of LinkedIn where he was the Special Guest at the firm’s Fireside Chat with a packed full room of Nigerians in the Diaspora.
Nigeria has been identified as one of the major countries where the latest generation of Internet users will come from, and the next billion users are said to be already changing the Internet in three key ways: the prominent use of smartphones to access the Internet, an instinct for universal computing, and a demand for localized content.
Photo from google images