Okechukwu Nnodim, Abuja
To implement the Nigerian National Broadband Plan 2020-2025, Nigeria needs between $3.5bn to $5bn, the Nigerian Communications Commission announced on Tuesday.
Executive Vice Chairman, NCC, Umar Danbatta, disclosed this in Abuja on the sidelines of the first stakeholder consultation with telecommunication industry players on the implementation of the NNBP 2020-2025.
The NNBP was inaugurated in March last year and had set new national broadband targets for both private and public players in the industry.
Danbatta, who was represented by the Chairman, Broadband Implementation Steering Committee/Executive Commissioner, Technical Services, NCC, Ubale Maska, said the plan had not only set targets but had recommended initiatives.
He said, “$3.5bn to $5bn is the estimated cost of implementing the plan and the implementation of the plan is on course.”
The NCC boss stated that the NNBP had provided timelines for industry players, responsibility matrix, governance structure, and the various roles expected to be played by all stakeholders in the implementation of the plan.
On counterpart funding for infrastructure needed for the implementation of the plan, he stated that the commission, as well as operators, would source for funds from various channels.
Danbatta said the government would support industry players with funds, but noted that not many resources would come from the Federal Government, considering the enormous financial tasks it was shouldering.
He said, “We have several options, although none is defined yet. But we hope to raise something from the government. However, as you can see there are many pressing demands on the government.
“So we don’t know whether raising money from the government will happen, but the infrastructure fund which the Central Bank of Nigeria is floating is another potential source and the Universal Science Provision Fund is also there.”
He said operators might not get as much they want, adding that this was why all the licenses were out there sourcing for investors.