A strong representation has been presented to multinational telecommunication company, Nokia Networks, on the need for it to raise its investments in research and development (R&D) in order to support the growth of information and communication technology (ICT) in Nigeria.
Aminu Maida, executive vice chairman and chief executive officer (EVC/CEO), Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), put the request through to the telecommunication giant when a delegation from Nokia Networks of Finland led by Jarno Syrjala, deputy minister, under-secretary of state for international trade from the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland, visited the NCC recently to explore further opportunities for mutually-beneficial relationships.
Maida told the delegation that the Nigerian government is keenly interested in harnessing Nokia’s capabilities through technology transfer to support Nigerian youths in technical skills.
The Nigerian government is targeting training of three million youths in ICT skills to advance the country’s digital economy. “We are keen on getting the youths employed, as our Ministry is targeting three million youths for skills acquisition,” the EVC said.
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Maida informed the Nokia contingent that the commission places primacy in R&D as the bedrock of any knowledge economy, and for advancement of innovation.
He, therefore, urged Nokia and other original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), to explore R&D opportunities to deepen local content development in Nigeria.
Head of delegation, Syrjala, congratulating Maida on his appointment by President Bola Tinubu as Nigeria’s chief telecom regulator, informed that the purpose of the visit was to explore areas of collaboration to support Nigeria’s digital economy agenda.
Syrjala recalled Nokia’s continued partnership with communications service providers in Nigeria, as well as cable and other operators to deliver critical network systems with high performance, reliability, and security.
He noted that Nokia already has an R&D centre in Nigeria, and would target greater investment in this regard.