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Nigeria targets 70% broadband penetration by 2025

Nigeria , 24 Feb 2020

Nigeria targets 70% broadband penetration by 2025

The Nigerian government is collaborating with the UK government on a fresh national broadband policy and aims to increase broadband penetration to 70% by 2025.

This was revealed by the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, while receiving the draft report of the National Broadband Plan Committee 2020-2025.

Committee members developed a new plan to replace the 2013-2018 National Broadband Plan.

The new document will serve as a guiding template for further development of the telecommunications sector and extend the country's current broadband coverage of 37.8% to 70% by 2025.

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) stated: "The 2013-2018 National Broadband Plan was designed to achieve at least 30% broadband penetration in Nigeria. At the expiration of the old plan, Nigeria achieved 37.8 percent broadband coverage."

In addition to increasing broadband penetration, the new plan also underlines growing and emerging technologies, such as 5G.

Pantami said increasing Nigeria's broadband penetration will "give concrete expression to the federal government's commitment to making Nigeria a truly digital economy."

Prof. Umar Danbatta, Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, noted that achieving the country's broadband objectives will require overcoming several challenges including inadequate metro fibre infrastructure in several towns and cities "that will distribute adequate bandwidth from international submarine cables at the landing points in Lagos of more than 9 terabits."

He also emphasised high right of way charges, multiple regulation and taxation, and delays in obtaining site acquisition permits.

Danbatta attributed progress in broadband penetration to several successful actions including spectra auction, re-planning, licensing, and opening up of the E-band spectrum 70/80 GHz band for both last mile and backhaul services.

The West African country's final national broadband plan is scheduled for release later this year.

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