from OKORO CHINEDU in Lagos, Nigeria
LAGOS – THE information and communications technology (ICT) sector has underlined its importance as the major driver of economic recovery in Nigeria.
Its contribution comes amid Africa’s largest economy emerging from the coronavirus crisis.
The non-oil economy is aiding the recovery in the West African country that is the largest producer of the commodity.
The national accounts for the first quarter (Q1) of 2022 by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) show that gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 3,1 percent year-on-year compared with the 3,9 percent y/y recorded in Q4 2021.
The oil economy contracted by 26 percent y/y in Q1.
Coronation Merchant Bank noted the sector has suffered from production shut-ins as a result of massive theft of crude oil between production platforms and terminals over the past months.
The non-oil economy grew by 6,1 percent during the period.
Key drivers within the non-oil economy include finance and insurance (23,2 percent y/y), telecommunications (14,5 percent), trade (6,5 percent), manufacturing (5,9 percent), construction (4,8 percent), real estate (4,4 percent), and agriculture (3,2 percent).
Coronation highlighted telecommunications posted growth of 14,5 percent compared with 5,3 percent recorded in Q4 2021.
“The segment continues to benefit from modest growth in subscriptions and increased usage from existing subscribers,” the bank’s Economic Research unit stated.
It noted as businesses adjust to the new hybrid work structure, there has been increased demand for data which has supported the significant boost.
Finance technology and digital services have also contributed to growth in this sector.
“The information and communication sector has remained quite resilient,” noted FBN Quest.
It reported that for instance, MTN Nigeria’s Q1 2022 results revealed that steady double-digit y/y growth in data revenue continued to drive performance.
– CAJ News