By Olivia Nnorom
The Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) and the Voice of Nigeria (VON), have stressed the need to promote the utilisation of modern technology to grow the nation’s economy as well as create wealth and jobs for the teeming unemployed youths.
This was the focus of discussions at the maiden International Technology and Communication Expo held recently in Abuja, where it was agreed that technology plays a critical role in the advancement of a country’s economy.
Johnson Anene, chairman, Abuja trade centre, ACCI,in his presentation,stated that progress will elude the country, if it ignores modern technology.
“Technology is very important in our daily lives and business activities. We need to move our national economy forward. Our economic growth needs to be improved. But without technology and proper digital communication, there will be no advancement.” he said.
Anene identified lack of implementation as a major challenge hindering the development of the various policy initiatives that will enhance economic growth in the country. This, he explained, is why the chamber will liaise with the incoming government to ensure that policies that will aid technological innovations in the country are implemented.
He explained that the expo was to promote the application of technology and effective communication in business, private and national life, stressing the need to bring investors to key into indigenous innovative products and opportunities.
According to the ACCI chairman, the expo would go a long way in bridging the gap between African investment prospects and international investors in the technology sector.
In a similar vein,Osita Okechukwu, director general of the Voice of Nigeria (VON), pointed out the need of Nigerians to pace up in terms of consumption of the tools and skills needed for technological development.
According to Okechukwu, “The reality of today is that every facet of human existence has been exponentially impacted by Information and Communications Technology; from agriculture to education, energy, information dissemination and, indeed, security”
Speaking further, the VON DG, represented by Hajia Sani, director of digital media,noted that the advanced technological gadgets have dramatically changed the landscape of what is possible and the time it takes to achieve tasks.
“We are, undoubtedly, witnessing the dawn of a fusion of creativity, intelligence and machines, that is pushing the boundaries of the realm of development as we know it,” he said.
Okechukwu also noted that Nigeria had the potential to positively impact the world and meet the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through an increased adoption of digital technology.
In his words, “Indeed, the story of the Nigerian spirit and resilience is just now being written. This remains a pivotal position of the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari, as encapsulated in the Nigerian Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS) and the Nigeria e-Government Interoperability Framework (NeGIF), both of which encourage and empower all Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to implement cross-portfolio collaborations among themselves and with Nigerian businesses at home and abroad.”