Minister of communication and digital economy, Prof Isa Ali Ibrahim (Pantami), has said the advent of accessible information and communication technology (ICT) has accelerated Nigeria’s economic development.
He said a significant number of the present information and communication technology are tools of the digital economy infrastructure promoted by the federal government’s National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy 2020-2030 to spur the sector into action and achieve its goals for a more prosperous and productive country.
Pantami, at the 2nd SOST national conference opened yesterday at the Federal Polytechnic, Bauchi, said the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) had indicated that ICT sector removed Nigeria from recession of the 2020 with a 4th Quarter GDP growth of 17.64% followed abysmally by crop production sector with a growth of 3.42 per cent.
The minister, who was represented by the managing director of Galaxy Backbone Plc, Prof. Muhammad Bello Abubakar, said the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the introduction of digital forms of work in the economy through the effective utilization of digital platforms in the exchange of commodities, services and ideas.
He said digital economy within the framework of modernisation of traditional production industries and services, organisation of related financial transactions, end-to-end penetration of information technologies and digitalisation of economic processes, and change in the structure of consumption will become the basis for the formation of new markets and conditions, and approaches to forecasting and management of decisions.
According to him, the digital economy opens up new opportunities for business, and in order to live and develop in the environment, companies must radically restructure their business processes, as the process of digitisation today affects all countries of the world.
He told the conference with the topic, “The Role of Science, Technology and Innovation in a Digital Economy Toward Achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)” that sustainable development recognises that growth must be both inclusive and environmentally sound.
Pantami further explained that Sustainable Development Goals covers a broad range of social and economic development issues with its core as science, technology and innovation which aim at better understanding the world.
In a welcome address, the chief host and rector of the Federal Polytechnic Bauchi, Arc. Sanusi Waziri Gumau said in the area of research and development, which is one of the parameters for grading institutions’ performance, Federal Polytechnic Bauchi is doing well.
Gumau submitted, “Without mincing words, I am proud to tell you that the Federal Polytechnic Bauchi is the best in the Northeast sub-region. The Executive Secretary of the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund), Prof. Suleiman Bogoro confirmed this when he visited us earlier this year.”
Delivering a paper, the dean, Faculty of Life Sciences, Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) and director Centre for Biotechnology, Research and Training (CBRT), Professor Mohammed Nasir Shuaibu, said the goal of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is to end poverty, save the planet and ensure peace and prosperity in the world by 2030, but noted that 9 years to the 2030 target, Nigeria has not made any appreciable progress.
“Industrialisation is widely acknowledged as the singular most driving factor for economic development and growth. No developed economy in the world today can achieve enduring growth and development without an advanced manufacturing capability,” he said.