Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami has asked for the support of the Belgian government to grow Nigeria’s unexplored digital economy.
The minister while receiving, in his Abuja office, the Belgium Ambassador to Nigeria, His Excellency, Amb. Daniel Bertrand on a working visit, reaffirmed the commitment of the federal government to provide the enabling environment for foreign companies willing to invest in the country’s burgeoning digital economy sector.
Belgium is the 6th-most digital society in Europe in terms of connectivity and the integration of digital technology, according to the Digital Economy & Society Index (DESI) which ranks European Union member states based on their digital performance and competitiveness.
Tax holiday for investors in digital economy
“Nigeria will be willing to grant tax holiday and pioneer status to foreign tech companies willing to domesticate in the country,” said Pantami while stressing that Nigeria is blessed with a youthful, tech-savvy population.
He added: “Nigeria has the largest economy in term of GDP and population in Africa. It is also both a geographical and an economic gateway to sub-Saharan Africa”.
Ambassador Daniel Bertrand visited the minister to explore possible areas of collaboration in the digital economy sector of Nigeria.
Nigeria has launched its Digital Nigeria agenda targeting rapidly digitise all sectors the economy and create a portfolio of new tech-driven businesses in line with global trends.
“The rapid spread of digital technologies is transforming many economic and social activities. However, widening digital divides threaten to leave developing countries, and especially least developed countries, even further behind. A smart embrace of new technologies, enhanced partnerships and greater intellectual leadership are needed to redefine digital development strategies and the future contours of globalization,” says Secretary-General, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), Mukhisa Kituyi in a 2019 report by the UN agency.