Broadband penetration rises to 32.34%, says NCC

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Nigeria’ broadband penetration has increased to 32.34 per cent in January 2019, latest figures from the Nigerian Communications Commission have shown.

This is as the number of 3G and 4G subscriptions in the country hit 61.7 million as of January this year.

Broadband penetration is typically measured by the percentage of the total population with access to broadband networks out of each hundred.

According to NCC, the broadband penetration can be calculated by taking the total active broadband subscription figure of 61,732,130 and divide it by the population figure of 190,886,311 (using the United Nations’ projection as of December 2017).

The country set a five-year National Broadband Plan, which ran from 2013 to 2018, with the target of a minimum of 30 per cent broadband penetration from the five per cent it had in 2013.

The NCC had said based on the 190 million population of Nigeria and 169 million connected lines, those who had access to broadband at a speed of 1.5 megabytes per second covered over 30 per cent of the population as of December 2018.

In December 2018, NCC data indicated that the country had attained a broadband penetration of 31.48 per cent.

Speaking at a stakeholders’ forum in Abuja recently, the Executive Vice-Chairman of the NCC, Prof  Umar Danbatta, noted that multiple regulations, right of way and delayed permits were some of the challenges affecting the broadband plan.

To address the challenges limiting the plan, Danbatta said the NCC deliberately developed a Strategic Vision Plan which was in line with the commission’s strategic management plan.

He noted, “The implementation of the commission’s SVP roadmap has so far resulted in the attainment of 30.9 per cent broadband penetration as of November 2018. What this connotes is that a total of 58,965,478 were connected to the broadband networks out of 108,457,051 Internet subscribers in the nation’s telecom networks. The figures rose in December to 60,087,199 taking the penetration to 31.48 per cent.

“Yet even more pertinent to broadband penetration is the fact that six infrastructure companies have been licensed to drive the development of infrastructure across the nation’s geographical zones and Lagos,” Danbatta added.

The President, Association of Telecommunication Companies of Nigeria, Mr Olusola Teniola, had said it was possible for the country to achieve 70 per cent broadband penetration in another five years since the country had been able to exceed 30 per cent target despite the challenges.

 

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