Nigeria Targets Country-Wide Broadband Access by 2020

Nigeria plans to help revive economic growth by expanding broadband Internet access throughout Africa’s most populous country by 2020 despite delays in rolling out the needed infrastructure, according to the telecommunications regulator.

“Broadband is the next frontier in the information communications and technology industry which will help in the speedy transformation of the Nigerian economy,” Nigerian Communications Commission Vice Chairman Umar Danbatta told reporters in Lagos, the commercial capital, on Wednesday. “By the time we roll out broadband, we expect Internet penetration to astronomically rise.”

The Nigerian economy probably expanded 3 percent last year, the slowest pace in 16 years, according to the International Monetary Fund. A plunge in oil prices has cut revenue in Africa’s biggest crude producer, which is also facing a record budget deficit to pay government salaries and build roads and power plants. About 97 million Nigerians have access to the Internet, Danbatta said, just over half the population of more than 170 million people.

Read more: Nigeria Targets Country-Wide Broadband Access by 2020 – Bloomberg Business