YBTC News- The Director General of National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA ), Kashifu Abdullahi, has said Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector of the country has contributed almost one per cent in the first quarter of the year to Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) has increased by almost one per cent
The director-general made this known while delivering his remarks at the international webinar organised by the Information Technology (Industry) Association Nigeria (ITAN), Kano and Abuja Chapters, on Tuesday.
He noted that despite the ravages of the COVID-19 pandemic on all economies of the world, the country’s ICT sector grew to 14 per cent compared to growth of 13.12 per cent in the previous quarter as people relied more on digital platforms during the lockdown.
Mr Abdullahi, who was represented by the Director e-Government Development and Regulations, Vincent Olatunji, said NITDA, as the agency with the responsibility to oversee the IT sector, is at the forefront of creating initiatives and schemes to mitigate the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on the country’s ICT sector, particularly the startup ecosystem.
He noted that NITDA using its two special purpose vehicles – The Office for ICT Innovation and Entrepreneurship (OIIE) and the Office for Nigerian Content in ICT (ONC) – is working hard at achieving its mandates of fostering the growth of technology startup ecosystem and ensuring patronage of local content in ICT.
Some of these initiatives, according to the DG, include Work Permit for Technology Startups during lockdown; The Nigeria COVID-19 Innovation Challenge where three startups with the following solutions emerged winners: locally made ventilator, decontamination chamber and e-Health monitor Technology Innovation and Entrepreneurship Support Scheme (TIESS) which have the following schemes; Incubation Programme; Technical Capacity Building, Internship Programme, Hub Upscaling.
He said the schemes are designed to target various aspect for the ecosystems to achieve maximum positive effect on the ICT ecosystem. Another programme in the pipeline is Startup Workspace Voucher programme aimed at supporting young startups to overcome their financial challenges.