How Nigeria exited COVID-19 triggered recession – Pantami

Isa Ali Pantami, Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, says digital innovation helped Nigeria to stem the tide of the recession caused by coronavirus.

In the last quarter of 2020, Africa’s most populous country entered the worst economic decline in more than three decades.

Months earlier, the World Bank warned that the pandemic and the crash of oil prices could plunge the economy into a credit crunch last witnessed in the 1980s.

On Monday in Abuja, Pantami said calculated policies and programmes in his ministry fastracked Nigeria’s early exit from recession.

He spoke at the unveiling of “Digital Innovation for Economic Prosperity in Nigeria”, a compendium of National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) activities.

Pantami assured citizens that the federal government is keen on developing the country’s digital sector.

Nigeria is witnessing increasing investment in e-commerce, mobile application, online advertising, cloud computing, high-frequency trading, and online payment services.

The minister observed that digital innovation has led to a shift from the traditional economy into the digitalized one, transforming the nation’s and global economies.

“In 2020, Nigeria was able to exit the COVID-19 triggered recession through the impact of digital innovation”, he said.

Pantami cited the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) Fourth Quarter Gross Domestic Product (GDP) Report which confirmed that the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector grew at 14.70%.

“It is the fastest growing sector, faster than the aggregated growth rates of the second to sixth fastest growing sectors”, the minister added.

In attendance were Kashifu Inuwa, NITDA Director General; Editor-in-Chief of PRNigeria, Yushau Shuaib; Chairman, Board of Directors of IMPR, Sule Ya’u Sule, TechDigest Managing Director, Inyene Ibanga, among others.