Handshake between Nigerian and Indian ICT sectors

by MMC
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A PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PwC) report says Nigeria and India can leverage mutual strengths to develop opportunities for youth. PwC, in the report titled “Nigeria-India: Lessons from Two Great Democracies”, explained the similarities between the two developing countries in terms of population, culture, common democracy, diaspora and economy. But despite the commonalities, there are divergences across technology, industries and economics.

The report notes that these differences can, however, present an opportunity for Nigeria to exploit India’s opportunities and address similar challenges, as well as for India to invest in Nigeria to become a global influence.

“Despite the similarities between the two countries, India has managed to perform much better in some key areas such as; export of services, government-enabled development, strengthening of the education system, formalization of the informal sector, adoption of technologies and cultural exports. Improving these key dimensions could help Nigeria close the gap with India,” the report said.

“Exporting services constitutes a huge area of ​​opportunity that can be explored by Nigeria. India’s share in global services in 2018 stood at 3.5%, seven times higher than the 0.5% recorded in 1995. This growth can be mainly attributed to the rise of ICT services and the medical and wellness tourism. The main reason for the growth of the services sector in India is the underlying infrastructure to produce an economically dynamic and skilled workforce.

The report adds that despite India’s uniqueness, it can explore and benefit from Africa’s largest trading hub, Nigeria, by investing in ICT services, technology startups, agriculture, education, energy and the pharmaceutical industry.

India, which enjoys a global reputation as a leader in the software, IT services and business process outsourcing industry, has employed over 10 million people in the ICT sector over time.

The high demand for ICT services in India has also created a demand for education, particularly in the fields of engineering and computer science. This has, in turn, positioned India as a key exporter of ICT knowledge.

Moreover, according to reports for the year 2023 alone, from January to the end of May, the total investment in ICT in Nigeria reached $16 million, of which $4.5 million was made by Indian companies. This represents 8% and this figure could increase before the end of the year.

Apart from Indian investments in ICT, companies in the software sector are working in Nigeria on infrastructure development as well as technical requirements of these companies.

“At a time when the Nigerian economic environment is marked by uncertainties, there is a need to develop greater synergy between India and Nigeria in order to reduce poverty and hunger and improve the quality of life of many Nigerians,” said Abdullahi Alaso, a public analyst.

Alaso added that with several leading ICT companies in India, Nigerian entrepreneurs and start-ups could leverage the abundance of technological knowledge to strengthen their business know-how.

This is likely why Nigeria and India recently agreed to work together in ICT areas to accelerate innovation and digital economic growth across the country.

Minister of Communications, Innovation and Digital Economy Dr Bosun Tijani revealed this after meeting some Indian officials led by Dr MM Tripathi, Director General of National Institute of Electronics and of Information Technology (NIELIT), New Delhi. .

Represented at the meeting by the Director General of the National Information Development Agency (NITDA), Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, Tiajni said the collaboration was a significant step towards strengthening collaboration in the field of economics digital.

The minister said the partnership would also realize President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s vision of creating one million digital jobs for Nigerians by 2025.

The meeting, which was part of the federal government’s participation in the G20 Summit in India, was aimed at fostering a deeper understanding of India’s digital economy and exploring avenues for knowledge sharing and collaboration.

Discussions covered topics ranging from digital skills development to cybersecurity and innovation.

Speaking on behalf of Dr Tijani, Inuwa expressed optimism about mutual growth prospects, while emphasizing the importance of leveraging India’s vast expertise in digital technologies to strengthen the country’s digital economy. Nigeria.

He said the leaders of Nigeria and India emphasized that this partnership was not only about bilateral cooperation, but also about contributing to the broader global digital ecosystem.

They believe that by joining forces, they can accelerate their respective digital transformations while playing a more influential role in shaping the global technology space, he added.

In the same vein, the Nigerian delegation also paid a working visit to the headquarters of the National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM).

Mr. Shivendra Singh, Vice President of Global Business Development, welcomed the Nigerian team and engaged them in fruitful discussions on potential areas of collaboration in the technology ecosystem.

Mr. Singh highlighted India’s thriving software and services industry, which has earned a global reputation for excellence.

He expressed enthusiasm to work with Nigeria to identify business partners and explore synergies that could benefit both countries.

He spoke about government initiatives to support technological innovation and foster a vibrant startup ecosystem in Nigeria, as well as the need for international partnerships to accelerate Nigeria’s progress in the digital space.

For his part, Mr. Shivendra Singh acknowledged Nigeria’s growing influence in the African technology ecosystem and expressed his desire to facilitate collaboration and knowledge exchange between Nigerian and Indian technology companies.

He said that India is one of the world leaders in digital economy, especially in ICT development, with significant contribution to GDP.

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