Image from iso.bf
The report, which focuses on Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria and Senegal, shows the impact internet-enabled services have in agriculture, health, finance, education, governance, energy and transport, as well as SME growth.
“The report also analyses the pre-conditions for impact, looking at both business and ICT infrastructure as well as factors that influence how and why users get online,” Ory Okolloh, policy and government relations manager at Google Africa, said.
From the report over 80 per cent of SME owners expect the internet will help them grow their business.
The report gives an example of how the National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF) in Kenya reduced its administrative costs from 60 per cent to 32 per cent by automating processing, accessing real-time data and tracking the payment processes.
This showcases how businesses in Africa can reduce their expenses and increase income and efficiency using ICT services.
Services such as Pesapal, MTN mMoney and Pagatech were highlighted as helping to create internet-based commerce. The report highlighted how healthcare organisations are also leveraging on the power of the internet to reduce training costs for nurses.
“The primary challenge for policymakers is to align policy across three dimensions - ICT policy, sector policy and general policies for doing business - in order to create the right environment to capture the Internet’s potential,” Okolloh said.
“Some governments in the countries featured have succeeded in creating the right market conditions. However, policymakers need to ensure ongoing investment in both core infrastructure and the conditions that drive Internet usage, including access, awareness, and attractiveness.”