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We’ll make Nigeria participate in $14.5 trillion global digital economy, says Shettima

We’ll make Nigeria participate in $14.5 trillion global digital economy, says Shettima

The Vice Presidential Candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Kashim Shettima has promised that Nigeria would be able to participate in the Fourth Industrial Revolution’s $14.5 trillion global digital economy (4IR) if the All Progressives Congress (APC) wins the February elections.

He said this  during a roundtable discussion with representatives from Leading American Companies that took place over the weekend at the US Consulate in Lagos. Mary Beth Leonard, the US ambassador to Nigeria, and William B. Stevens, the consul general, organized the event in cooperation with the American Business Council.

According to him, the new APC administration will completely position Nigeria to fully harness the potential of the booming $14.5 trillion global digital economy as promoted by the World Economic Forum because it is the continent’s largest economy and has a high mobile penetration index.

H added that Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, if elected, will actively advance the country’s digital innovation and entrepreneurship initiatives, as outlined in the APC campaign manifesto, in addition to fully implementing Nigeria’s Start-up Act.

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“We will invest in research and development through funding and developing effective legal, institutional and regulatory frameworks and policies to support the thriving Nigerian innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem. We will support start-ups with promising ideas to develop them from inception to impact.

“Our party will support the development and growth of the ICT industry to facilitate the production, distribution, and provision of ICT products, goods, and services from the local markets to the global markets. Our target is to turn small and medium businesses into innovation-driven enterprises. We want to create more unicorns in Nigeria. Today, we have five (Flutterwave, Interswitch, Jumia, Andela and Opay) out of seven African unicorns.

He said according to a McKinsey estimate, from 2016 to 2030, is a need to invest an average of USD3.3 trillion annually in infrastructure in order to keep up with predicted growth, Senator Shettima said. This is due to the strong demand for infrastructure investments around the world.

“Nigeria isn’t an exception to this as its population continues to rise at an accelerated rate.  Therefore, it is imperative for Nigeria to accelerate the growth of the economy and to close its enormous infrastructure investment deficit, which is estimated to be around $100 billion a year, according to Moody’s 2020 report.

“The Tinubu/Shettima movement do realise that there is the need for investment in major sectors of the economy such as agriculture, education, healthcare, power, oil and gas. We understand that Nigeria is yet a far cry from what is obtainable in first-world countries but we are irrevocably committed to accelerating the improvement of the system through massive new investment and deployment of new technologies. We plan to expand financing sources for infrastructure development across Nigeria, using a blend of public and private capital including institutional investors and specialized infrastructure financiers who can provide long-term capital. We strongly believe this financing plan can address the rising demand for infrastructure through various levels of intervention.

He however pointed out that Nigeria, like other nations, has formidable obstacles to developing its digital economy, including a lack of qualified digital natives and a lack of government commitment at all levels to advancing the agenda for the country’s digital transformation.

“The APC manifesto has designed a roadmap to aid the Nigerian Government in navigating the Fourth Industrial Revolution and leverage its innovative technologies for a viable digital economy within a sustainable, realistic, inclusive, enabling, empowering, safe, and secure framework.

“Our manifesto recommends policy, technological and other interventions for the Government to promote a digital Nigeria that can harness the opportunities of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

The vice presidential candidates for the Labour Party (LP), Yusuf Datti, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Ifeanyi Okowa, and the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), Isaac Idahosa, were also present in the round table discussions.

We’ll make Nigeria participate in $14.5 trillion global digital economy, says Shettima

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