The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has engaged with stakeholders in the telecom ecosystem with a view to pursuing proactive regulatory interventions targeted at ensuring an enabling operating environment and improving investment climate in the Nigerian telecom industry.
The event, which took place recently in Lagos, was an assemblage of key industry stakeholders with the central objective to analyse the current state of the sector, process the issues, and chart new pathways to a more effective and sustainable regulatory regime for the stability and growth of the Nigerian telecom industry.
According to a statement issued by the NCC director of Public Affairs, Dr. Ikechukwu Adinde, the executive vice chairman and chief executive officer of the Commission, Prof. Umar Danbatta, while speaking on the theme of the Summit: “The Future of Telecom Regulation in Nigeria,” said the event presented a unique opportunity for the Commission to interact with critical stakeholders.
Through such interaction, the EVC said the Commission would be able to brainstorm and migrate to new frontiers of visionary regulations that will galvanise and foster desired growth in the industry.
Danbatta explained that the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic triggered political and socio-economic uncertainties globally and underscored the crucial role of digital connectivity in keeping societies functioning, as the online life became, essentially, a new way of life.
He stated that with the increased dependence on digital platforms, the theme of the event had become necessary in order to put in place a broader regulatory framework that will enhance and protect the integrity of the industry in the emergent digital economy.
In this context, the EVC said the NCC will continue to diligently pursue the implementation of policy frameworks such as Nigeria National Broadband Plan (NNBP) 2020-2025; and the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS) 2020-2030 which are consistent with NCC’s regulatory interventions such as the Commission’s Strategic Management Plan (SMP), 2020-2024 and Strategic Vision Plan (SVP), 2021-2025, among others.
Danbatta said all the policy and regulatory frameworks principally seek to provide a platform for Nigerian citizens to engage in innovative developments for the telecoms industry and improve the nation’s ability to compete in the ever-competitive global space.
Explaining further on the transformation happening as a result of the expanding spectrum of the digital ecosystem, Danbatta said the industry is witnessing new business delivery and breakthroughs due to the expansion of boundaries of digital Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), especially fintech and e-commerce firms. The EVC said those consequential ecosystems have contributed to the growth of the Nigerian digital economy riding on telecom infrastructure.
Danbatta aptly reckoned that digital services and contents provided by these SMEs will leverage broadband infrastructure and the upcoming deployment of Fifth Generation (5G) networks being driven by the Commission to deliver more innovative and high-quality experiences to consumers.
“The Commission’s successful auction and licensing of the 3.5GHz spectrum licences in the last quarter of 2021 for the deployment of 5G technology is set to create many opportunities for the development of the industry and as a regulator, we are conversant with the fact that a dynamic regulatory environment is needed to sustain this industry growth”, Danbatta said.