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5G Service Subscription Hits 500,000 Users

The Fifth Generation (5G) services subscription has 500,000, says the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).

This is even as the commission is targeting 50 per cent broadband penetration before the end of 2023.

The executive vice chairman, NCC, Prof. Umar Danbatta, disclosed this at a media chat with executive editors and media chiefs in the northern part of the country.

Danbatta averred that broadband penetration, which stood at six per cent in 2015 has increased significantly to 47.01 per cent as of July, 2023, enhancing over 89.73 million subscriptions on 3G, 4G and 5G networks in the country; additionally, general internet subscriptions have reached 159.5 million up from less than 100 million in 2015.

“The national target to achieve 70 per cent broadband penetration by 2025 is receiving renewed attention from NCC, which promises 50 per cent before the end of 2023. The Commission’s efforts to improve broadband penetration are yielding fruitful results with the current estimates as at July 2023 standing at 47.01 per cent,” Danbatta explained.

Using the extant reviewed five-pillar Strategic Vision Plan as building block, the EVC spoke to 119 milestones achieved under the five strategic pillars, including regulatory excellence, universal broadband, market development, digital economy and strategic collaboration.

Danbatta said, through effective implementation of NCC’s mandates under his leadership and cooperation of internal and external stakeholders since 2015, telecommunications industry in Nigeria has achieved remarkable milestones under his leadership.

“While we acknowledge the challenges encountered by the industry, we have also witnessed explosive growth, improved regulatory standards, and digital innovations that have garnered global recognition,” he said.

While reeling out impressive statistics that have characterised his leadership at NCC from 2015 to date, the EVC said active telephone subscribers had increased from less than 150.7 million to 218.9 million, representing a teledensity growth of 115.70 per cent from 107.87 per cent in 2015.

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Through stimulating broadband infrastructure across the country, Danbatta said, broadband penetration, which stood at 6 per cent in 2015 has increased significantly to 47.01 per cent as of July, 2023, enhancing over 89.73 million subscriptions on 3G, 4G and 5G networks in the country. Additionally, general Internet subscriptions have reached 159.5 million up from less than 100 million in 2015.

“Also, from eight per cent contribution to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2015, telecommunications sector now contributes 16 per cent quarterly to the Nigerian economy as of the second quarter of 2023. Besides, following the authorisation of more telecommunications companies to operate in Nigeria’s telecoms sector, the investments profile has increased tremendously from $38 billion in 2015 to $75 billion currently and this keeps growing daily. From the sales of Fifth Generation (5G) C-Band Spectrum, the NCC has generated over $847.8 million for the Federal Government,” he said.

However, Danbatta said, while the industry still faces a number of challenges such as vandalism, securing equitable Right of Way (RoW) from governmental stakeholders, as well as multiple taxation and regulation, the commission has put framework in place to work with necessary stakeholders to overcome the obstacles posed by these challenges and to sustain the growth trajectory which has been the hallmark of telecoms sector as an enabler of socio-economic development in Nigeria.

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