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With National Policy on 5G, ABSA Sees Opportunity for Economic Growth in Nigeria

Given the success recorded last December in the auction of the two slots in the 3.5GHz spectrum, in preparation for 5G technology rollout in Nigeria, coupled with the commitment of the federal government on 5G rollout this month, Absa, a leading pan-African Corporate and Investment Bank has said it is fully aligned with government’s aspiration of economic growth and development opportunity associated with the 5G rollout.

According to the financial services institution, “There are impressive and transformative economic growth opportunities inherent in the adoption of 5G technology as stated in the National Policy on 5G Networks for Nigeria, which was approved by the federal government on September 8, 2021.

“Following this approval, the Federal Government officially launched the policy as the driver of its digital economy agenda in Abuja on January 25, 2022. The government sees the adoption of 5G networks as an opening to create jobs in the economy, improve operational transparency, drive sectoral productivity and expand the fight against insecurity.”

After series of trials and exhaustive stakeholders’ engagements eliminating the perceived health risks associated with the 5G technology, President Muhammad Buhari, officially leading proceedings at the launch event, assured investors that as the rollout of the advanced network technology begins in earnest, the federal government would provide an enabling environment that supports robust investment in digital infrastructure.

Based on the development, Absa expressed excitement and faith in the launch of the national policy on 5G networks.

The Chief Executive Officer, Absa Nigeria, Sadiq Abu, said the policy would fast track the growth of the country’s digital economy.

“The race to keep pace with the rest of the globe demands urgent policy actions. Therefore, the launch of the national policy on 5G networks is laudable as it provides a fitting platform to drive the rollout of the 5G network on a national scale. Of course, this policy effort will make a difference on how sectors such as education, retail, health, manufacturing, and banking sectors are run with great implications on productivity, job creation, and revenue levels across sectors, ”he said.

According to him, “Absa as a growth partner will leverage its global experience and robust investment network in the sector and beyond to support investors in maximising market opportunities with the potential to drive growth in the economy.

“Technology is a key driver of innovation. Innovation heralds changes that foster improved standard of living on a larger scale. The introduction of the 5G technology is poised to change sectoral operations, create new jobs in the digital space while impacting operations across every line of human endeavours.

“The 5G technology is an advanced upgrade of previously existing wireless interconnectivity infrastructure such as the 2G, 3G and 4G. It is generally tagged as the fifth generation of wireless technology. The technology offers a high-speed, low-latency virtual reality world, as well as ultra-high-speed streaming, which will largely impact society in terms of how people commute, communicate, shop, bank, and produce the goods they consume, “Abu further said.

A recent report by PwC forecasted that the advanced tech infrastructure will likely contribute $13.2 trillion worth of goods and services to the global economy by 2035. According to the report, the tech infrastructure has the potential to create or transform up to 16 million jobs across all sectors of the economy, which includes full-time, part-time, and temporary jobs. It will also lead to the creation of industries not yet imagined, leading to the emergence of extensive opportunities for the local population.

Going by the disclosure made at the last Global Mobile Broadband Forum (MBBF) held in Dubai last year, over 500 million subscribers presently have access to commercial 5G networks in 176 countries. South Korea, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Hong Kong, the United States and Thailand top the list of countries where the new tech infrastructure has the widest coverage, according to Statista, a global data analytic body.

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