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Nigeria’s Investments In ICT Sector Hits $70bn – NCC

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Investments In ICT Sector Hits $70bn - NCC

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) said on Wednesday that investment in the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) sector has hit 70 billion dollars.

The Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, Prof. Umar Danbatta disclosed this while unveiling the Nigeria Pavilion, at the ongoing International Telecommunication Union (ITU) Telecom World 2017 in Busan, South Korea.

Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, Executive Vice Chairman and CEO of Nigerian Communications Commission

Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, Executive Vice Chairman and CEO of Nigerian Communications Commission

According to him, in 16 years since the Digital Mobile Licences (DML) were issued, investment in the sector has hit about $70 billion from a mere $50 million in 2001.

”Most of these investments are Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs).

”Although, we have made very modest progress in the sector, we still need to deepen investments to make broadband pervasive in the country.

”We are at 21 per cent now and our target is to hit 30 per cent by 2018, consistent with the National Broadband Plan,” Danbatta said in a statement made available to NAN.

He said that Nigeria came to the ITU Telecom World every year to tell its story, share its experiences and borrow a leaf from global best practices.

According to him, Nigeria comes to Telecom World to address its concerns, engage and collaborate with the global community to strengthen the growth and impact of the Nigerian Telecoms Industry.

”We, therefore, come to enlist the support of other players, governments, regulators and the global community from whom there is always a basket of ideas to take back home to Nigeria.

”The implementation of these ideas will ensure a better regulatory environment, even though ours has been seen as a very robust and consultative regulatory agency right from 2001, when the Digital Mobile Licences (DML) were issued.

”The spirit of cooperation and consultation is very high at ITU Telecom World events.

”While it is true that different people come with different notions to the event, the end result is to better serve our people.

”The end result is to deploy resources to address access gaps in underserved and unserved communities in our various jurisdictions,” Danbatta said.

He said that NCC’s engagement with the global community during the event was to create awareness of the investment opportunities in Nigeria’s telecommunications market, as well as guarantee of adequate Returns on Investments (RoIs).

Danbatta said that Nigeria, with a population of about 170 million was a preferred investment destination in Africa.

According to him, with over 150 million active subscribers, in the voice segment, over 102 per cent teledensity and a little over 92 million internet connections, Nigeria is indeed a place to invest.

”The ITU/UNESCO Broadband Commission for sustainable development recently said Nigeria now has about 21 per cent broadband penetration.

”And conscious of the reality that broadband fuels faster data transmission speed and capacity, our focus now is on how we can attract the right investments to grow this critical area of the sector through broadband coverage expansion.

”NCC has put in place measures and guidelines to licence wholesale broadband service providers consistent with the Open Access Model for broadband deployment.

”Of the seven infrastructure companies (Infracos) earmarked for licensing, only two have so far been licensed for Lagos and Abuja.

”The process of licensing of infracos for the five remaining zones is about to be concluded,” he said.

BUSINESS

These 4 Nigerian Banks Rank Among Africa’s Top Financial Institutions

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See Nigerian banks among Africa’s top financial institutions | fab.ng

Nigeria’s banking industry is making a big splash. Four Nigerian banks have been steadily climbing the ranks and are now considered some of the top financial institutions in Africa. This feat has been further amplified by a recent report from Global Finance, a respected authority on international finance.

Their spotlight on Africa’s best financial institutions has brought even more attention to Nigeria’s growing power in the African financial landscape. These banks haven’t achieved their success overnight. Their rise to prominence signifies a strong and stable foundation and a commitment to financial health.

This recognition by Global Finance isn’t just a win for the banks themselves but for all of Nigeria. It positions the country as a key player in Africa’s financial future and has the potential to attract foreign investment, boost confidence in the domestic banking system, and encourage further growth within the financial sector itself.

This is just the beginning for Nigerian banks. With their newfound recognition, these top-ranked institutions have the potential to expand their reach even further across Africa. This will provide innovative financial solutions to a wider range of customers. The future of African finance looks bright, and Nigerian banks are well-positioned to be at the forefront.

Let’s take a look at these banks below:

1. Zenith Bank Plc

Zenith Bank boasts a global team of over 10,000 employees. This extensive staff ensures they have the manpower to handle a large customer base and deliver quality service.

The bank has a massive physical presence within Nigeria, with a network of 500 branches and business offices. This extensive reach allows them to serve customers in a variety of locations across the country.

Zenith Bank isn’t satisfied with dominating the Nigerian market. They’ve strategically expanded their reach into other African nations, including Ghana, Sierra Leone, Gambia, and South Africa. This global presence positions them as a major player in the African financial landscape.

2. Access Bank

Access Bank is a successful commercial bank that operates in many African countries. They include Ghana and even have a branch in the United Kingdom. It’s part of a larger group of companies called Access Bank Group.

Access Bank is always looking to grow its business and recently made a move to expand into Kenya. To show how serious they are about growing in Kenya, they made an offer to buy a Kenyan bank named National Bank of Kenya.

3. United Bank for Africa (UBA)

The United Bank for Africa, or UBA for short, is very successful in Africa. They’ve won awards for their great service in countries like Burkina Faso and Sierra Leone.

UBA is a major player in African finance with over 1,000 branches spread across 20 African countries and more than 21 million customers.

However, there might be some trouble ahead. Recent political changes in Burkina Faso could make it difficult for UBA to operate there as smoothly.

4. Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB)

Guaranty Trust Bank, or GTB for short, was founded in 1990 and has grown into a very important financial institution around the world.

In 2021, they did a big reorganization and changed their name to GTCO Plc. This change also allowed them to grow their business even further. They opened offices in more and more places across Africa and even outside the continent.

Their dedication to doing a great job and keeping their customers happy is shown in how they were recently named the best bank in Gambia.

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BUSINESS

10 African Countries Where Cryptocurrency Is Restricted

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Cryptocurrency: 10 African Countries Where It Has No Use | Fab.ng

Cryptocurrency transactions remain banned in some African countries, despite the potential for regulatory frameworks to support their development.

According to Chainalysis, Africa is one of the fastest-growing crypto markets globally, with Kenya, Nigeria, and South Africa having the highest number of users in the region.

Many governments are wary of digital assets due to concerns over money laundering, illicit activities, tax evasion, and financial fraud, as cryptocurrency transactions can be hard to trace.

In 2021, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) ordered banks to close all customer accounts involved in cryptocurrency transactions. However, this ban was lifted in December 2023.

On May 6, 2024, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) increased restrictions by delisting the naira from all peer-to-peer (P2P) platforms. The Director-General of the SEC, Emomotimi Agama, mentioned that the government is drafting new regulations for the crypto sector, following the advice of the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Here are countries in Africa where crypto transactions or digital currencies has no use:

Tunisia is one of the African countries taking a particularly cautious approach to cryptocurrency. Back in 2018, their central bank made headlines by actually criminalising the use of cryptocurrencies.

They issued a strong statement warning people against using any digital asset that the Tunisian government did not officially approve. This strict stance shows just how seriously some African countries are taking the potential risks associated with cryptocurrency.

Sierra Leone has been very cautious about cryptocurrency. In 2019, their central bank took a strong stance against it. They shut down two cryptocurrency companies and made it clear that they wouldn’t be granting any licences to businesses or banks that wanted to deal with cryptocurrency deposits or trading.

This shows that Sierra Leone is concerned about the potential risks involved with cryptocurrency and is taking steps to limit its use in the country.

The situation regarding cryptocurrency in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is a bit unclear. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) reports that the Congolese government has completely banned cryptocurrency.

However, a 2018 study by Ecobank suggests the opposite. They found no official statements from either the Congolese government or the Central Bank regarding cryptocurrency’s legality or use.

This lack of clear communication from Congolese authorities makes it difficult to say for sure what the official stance is on cryptocurrency. However, from the IMF reports, it is assumed that the government does not accept its use.

Ghana is another African country taking a wait-and-see approach to cryptocurrency. The Ghanaian government has completely banned crypto transactions within the country.

Despite the ban, the government is still interested in the underlying technology behind cryptocurrency, blockchain. They’re currently studying how blockchain could be used to improve Ghana’s payment systems.

This cautious approach is evident in their actions. In 2022, they reaffirmed the 2018 ban on using cryptocurrency for any financial transactions in Ghana.

Algeria has a strict ban on cryptocurrency. Back in 2018, their parliament passed a law that completely restricted digital currency activity in the country. This law prohibits Algerians from buying, selling, using, or even just owning cryptocurrency.

In 2018, the country’s central bank raised a red flag about cryptocurrency. They issued a statement warning people against promoting or investing in crypto because it wasn’t regulated or officially licensed by the government. This suggests they’re concerned about the potential risks involved.

Morocco’s relationship with cryptocurrency has been a rollercoaster. In 2017, the Ministry of Economy slammed the brakes on crypto transactions, fearing they violated the country’s exchange regulations. This meant a complete ban on buying, selling, or trading cryptocurrency in Morocco.

However, things seem to be changing. In 2023, there was a positive shift. Morocco’s central bank announced they were working on drafting new regulations specifically for crypto trading. This suggests a move towards a more controlled and monitored crypto market in Morocco.

Tanzania is another African country where cryptocurrency exists in a bit of a grey area. There aren’t any written laws or regulations specifically about cryptocurrency transactions in Tanzania.

However, the Tanzanian central bank has taken a cautious approach. They issued a public statement advising people against trading or using virtual currencies like Bitcoin. The bank made it very clear that the only official currency recognised in Tanzania is the Tanzanian shilling.

Cryptocurrency is a hot topic in Central Africa, but there are no clear rules yet. Cameroon, for example, belongs to the Central African Economic and Monetary Community (CEMAC). This means they use the Central African CFA franc, managed by the Bank of Central African States (BEAC).

Right now, the BEAC hasn’t set any regulations for crypto trading. This might seem surprising considering the growing popularity of crypto. However, the good news is that the Cameroon government is working on it. They’re currently reviewing new rules to create a framework for cryptocurrency use in the country.

Things are complicated when it comes to cryptocurrency in Egypt. In 2018, a major Islamic legal authority called Dar al-Iftai issued a religious decree. This decree said that trading Bitcoin goes against Islamic law (Sharia Law). They basically classified it as forbidden, which is the meaning of the word “haram.”

This was followed by a move from the Egyptian Central Bank in 2019. They announced plans to create a new law. This law would make it illegal to create, trade, or even promote cryptocurrency without a special licence.

So, while using digital currency isn’t completely banned, it seems Egyptian officials are cautious about it and want to regulate it very closely.

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BUSINESS

Employment Will Teach You These 10 Lessons

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Employment Will Teach You These Lessons | Fab.ng

Employment, or working for a living, can be a double-edged sword.

Sure, employment is a great way to achieve financial security and independence. It allows you to pay your bills, afford the things you need and want, and build a nest egg for the future. But let’s be honest, it also comes with challenges you might not expect when you’re first starting out.

Let’s explore these employment lessons below:

1. Startup costs can be a hurdle

You start a job to earn money, but you also need money upfront for things like professional work clothes, reliable transportation to get to and from work, and maybe even some basic office supplies. It can feel ironic that you invest your own money just to be able to make more money at your new job.

2. The Monday blues can hit hard

If you’re not passionate about your job and employment, Mondays can feel especially dreadful. It’s tough to be motivated and energised to tackle a long week of tasks you don’t enjoy, even if the work itself is relatively easy. This can affect your overall mood and productivity.

3. Making ends meet can be a constant juggling act

You work diligently every day, putting in your hours and effort. But depending on your employment salary, your paycheck might only come once a month.

This can make it challenging to budget effectively and ensure you have enough money to cover all your expenses throughout the entire month. It might require some creativity and financial planning to stretch your paycheck as far as possible.

4. Payday loans can become a trap

If you’re not careful with your money management and overspend throughout the month, you might find yourself broke before your next paycheck arrives. It can be tempting to resort to payday loans or credit cards to cover your essential expenses until payday.

However, these options often come with high interest rates and fees, which can trap you in a cycle of debt and make it even harder to manage your finances in the long run.

5. Your well-being is paramount

When you’re desperate for a job and trying to get your foot in the door, you might downplay the importance of work-life balance and readily agree to work under pressure on your resume. But a job that constantly stresses you out and takes a toll on your mental health might not be worth it in the long run.

There are some things money can’t buy, like peace of mind, good health, and strong relationships. It’s important to get employment that offers a healthy work-life balance and doesn’t come at the expense of your well-being.

6. The side hustle can be a lifesaver

When your income from your main job isn’t enough to cover your bills and your desired lifestyle, you might find yourself brainstorming ways to make more money on the side.

This could involve starting a freelance business, taking on a part-time gig, or exploring other avenues to supplement your income.

The extra income can help you achieve your financial goals faster, reduce financial stress, and give you more breathing room in your budget.

7. Health truly is wealth

One unexpected illness or injury can wipe out your savings quickly. Medical bills and medications can be very expensive, and even basic health insurance might not cover everything. This makes staying healthy even more important.

Taking preventative measures like eating healthy, getting regular exercise, and getting enough sleep can help you avoid costly health problems down the road.

8. Relaxation is key to avoiding burnout

If you don’t take breaks and prioritise relaxation, you might get sick, which can be a financial burden due to missed workdays and medical bills.

It’s important to schedule time for vacations, hobbies, and activities that help you de-stress and recharge. A well-rested and relaxed employee is a more productive and resilient employee in the long run.

9. Sometimes privacy is necessary

Depending on your social circle and financial situation, you might try to hide the fact that you have a job, especially if people around you constantly ask for money.

You might avoid them to escape the pressure to lend them money or give financial handouts. This can be a way to protect your financial security and avoid feeling taken advantage of.

10. Appreciation for your parents grows

Seeing how quickly money comes and goes can make you appreciate your parents more. You realise it wasn’t easy for them to provide for you when you were younger.

They likely had to make sacrifices and manage their finances carefully to make ends meet. This newfound understanding can bring you closer to your parents and give you greater respect for their hard work.

Even though having employment has its challenges, it doesn’t mean being unemployed is better. Life can be tough, but you can learn to develop strong financial habits, find a job that aligns with your values, and prioritise your well-being to navigate the complexities of working life.

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