A report released by Google and the International Finance Corporation (IFC), succinctly estimates that Africa’s internet economy has the potential to reach 5.2% of the continent’s gross domestic product (GDP) by 2025, contributing nearly $180 billion to its economy.
The statistics on Nigeria’s broadband penetration can be adjudged to be quite favorable, though the internet development and infrastructures are still poor with the snail speed bandwidths as recurrent problems, which every internet user contends with.
The biggest problem bedeviling the sector is power, as most internet providers run their existing infrastructures basically on self-generated power, which has made the cost of internet services to be relatively high. This development calls for the intervention of the federal government to heavily invest in last-mile escalation of broadband distribution and internet development.
The report further projected that the potential contribution could reach $712 billion by 2050, with the proximate implication that most countries in Africa with good internet technology would benefit from the estimated GDP windfall.
What they are saying
According to the Managing Director, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of IFC, Stephanie von Friedeburg, “The digital economy can and should change the course of Africa’s history. This is an opportune moment to tap into the power of the continent’s tech startups for much-needed solutions to increase access to education, healthcare, and finance, and ensure a more resilient recovery, making Africa a world leader in digital innovation and beyond.”
In the words of the Director, Google Africa, Nitin Gajria, “Google and IFC have created this report to highlight the role the digital startup sector is playing and other factors driving the continent’s growth, in order to showcase and support the opportunities the continent presents.”
Also from the analysis done by Accenture, “In 2020, the continent’s GDP may contribute approximately $115 billion to Africa’s $2.554 trillion GDP (4.5% of total GDP). This is up from $99.7 billion (3.9% of total GDP) in 2019, with the potential to grow as the continent’s economies develop. Investments in infrastructure, consumption of digital services, public and private investment, and new government policies and regulations will play an important role in supporting Africa’s digital growth.”