The telecommunications and information services sector contributed N2.508 trillion to Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), representing 14.13 per cent, in the first quarter of 2023.
This is contained in a statement issued by Director of Public Affairs, Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Dr Reuben Muoka, on Friday in Abuja.
Muoka said that the figures released by National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed that the sector recorded a 4.3 per cent increase from its performance in the last quarter of 2022 when it recorded 13.55 per cent.
He said that when compared on a year-on-year basis, the growth showed positive progression from 12.94 per cent in the first quarter of 2022 to the 2023 figure of 14.13, which was an approximate growth of 9.19 per cent.
“The percentage of telecoms contribution to GDP was calculated from 46 distinct sectors of the economy, which constitute telecoms and information services baskets.
“The Nigerian telecom industry has continued to show positive outlook, which is credited to the innovative and predictable telecoms regulatory environment promoted and implemented by NCC.
One of the key highlights of the telecoms industry performance within the period was the generation of $820.8 million for the Federal Government from 5G spectrum licence fees paid by three eventual winning operators: MTN, MAFAB and Airtel.
“Following the issuance of the licences in December 2021 to MTN and MAFAB, both companies launched 5G services.
“Airtel, which received its licence in December 2022, is set to launch its services in June,” he said.
Muoka said another major development in the sector was the launch of Starlinks broadband services, a satellite-based wireless broadband service, with potential for nationwide coverage.
“This followed the issuance of licence to Elon Musk-owned SpaceX by the commission. The services are now available in different parts of the country.
“Meanwhile, the growth statistics of the telecoms industry are showing an impressive record of contributions to the economy,” he said.
“The director said that the number of phone subscribers as at April 2023 stood at 223.6 million, scoring a tele density of 117 per cent.
“Internet subscribers for the same period were 157 million, while broadband subscriptions stood at 92 million, translating to 48 per cent broadband penetration in the country,” he stated.