Nigeria experienced a 0.18 percent growth between 2010 and 2011, earning the country position 122 out of the 155 countries included in the ICT Development Index (IDI), a report released by International Telecommunication Union (ITU) states.
“The emergence of mobile Internet services (both prepaid and postpaid) has played a key role in the surge in numbers of mobile-broadband subscriptions in developing countries, bringing Internet to a large number of users who have limited access to fixed-broadband services,” ITU said.
Nigeria also saw a 15 percent revenue growth in the telecoms industry, owed to the expansion of service coverage by the telecos into the remote areas of the country, and more subscriptions to the mobile services.
According to the report, the progress seen in recent years in the uptake of ICTs would not have been possible without major investment in telecommunication networks. However, today, more investment is needed both in order to improve existing services, for example, upgrading to broadband so as to bring them to more people.”
Despite this increased coverage areas, Nigeria was ranked among the least connected countries with the likes of Ghana and Senegal present on the same list.
The report says that the low connection rates are due to the lack of infrastructure and skills needed to increase ICT penetration and usage.
ITU recommends that such countries should be given priority by policy-makers at both the national and international levels when it comes to ICT for development.
The report was prepared by the ICT Data and Statistics Division within the Telecommunication Development Bureau of the UN-specialised agency that coordinates the global telecoms industry.