The Smart Nigeria Digital Economy project will enhance activities of many fintech startups in Nigeria, and ensure their profitability and growth.
The Nigeria government has made known its plan to implement a “Smart Nigeria Digital Economy Project” which would create over 3 million new jobs in the country and increase value of the Nigeria’s fintech market by US$88 billion in the next ten years.
This was made known during a meeting of Ministers from developing countries including Nigeria, Mexico, Kenya, Argentina, Colombia, Sri Lanka, Uruguay, Chile, Costa Rica and Pakistan under the auspices of Friends of E-Commerce for Development (FED) in Geneva, Switzerland.
The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment Dr. Okechukwu Enelamah who led the delegation to Geneva said the ministry was already working on the “Smart Nigeria Digital Economy Project”. The minister disclosed that the objective is to solve efficiency problems and create opportunities in the economy, as well as improve competitiveness and foster technology development and innovation.
“The Smart Nigeria Digital Economy Project is Nigeria’s response to an area of intense economic and technological activity by Nigerian youths, where there is a growing pool of talent”, Enelamah said.
“It is a sector of the economy where the private sector already has ownership. The role of government would therefore be to ensure a sound pro-competitive regulatory environment and hardware infrastructure to foster rapid growth of this area,” he added.
The Minister also shared the fact that there are currently 150 million active mobile users in Nigeria, with over 60% of them connected to the internet. He highlighted that there are some 17m Facebook users and new technology startups and hubs as well as young people writing apps that solve problems and spur growth.
Other participating countries of the Friends of E-Commerce for Development (FED), attested to the achievements of the digital economy in Nigeria and activities of tech hubs in Lagos, the largest commercial city in Africa as accommodating some of Africa’s well-known consumer tech businesses such as iRokotv, Hotels.ng, Jobberman, Andela, Balogunmarket, and Trupp.com among others.