NCC’s Vigorous Efforts to Enhance Telecom Regulations

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The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) hosted its first-ever "Talk-To-The Regulator " Forum (TTTR) on June 1-2, 2023, in Bayelsa State, Nigeria. The forum served as a platform for stakeholders in the telecommunications industry to engage in two-way communication with the NCC, focusing on industry developments, regulations, and service delivery enhancements.

As the Nigerian telecom sector experiences rapid technological growth, the NCC has been actively working to adapt its regulations to accommodate these advancements and meet stakeholders expectations.

The TTTR Forum was a vital step towards gathering feedback, understanding industry concerns, and facilitating open dialogue between the NCC and telecommunications service providers.

Prof Umar Garba Danbatta, the executive vice chairman/CEO of the NCC, highlighted the significant milestones achieved by the sector, emphasizing the transformative impact of technology on service delivery and the subsequent rise in stakeholder expectations.

To ensure the industry stays up-to-date with the latest developments, the NCC has implemented measures such as the introduction of 5G service provision, the establishment of Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) licenses, and the ongoing review of existing licenses to enhance their robustness.

Aligning with the Nigeria National Broadband Plan (NNBP) for 2020-2025, the NCC aims to achieve a broadband penetration rate of 90% by 2025, with a target of surpassing 50% by the end of 2023. Currently, approximately 150 million Nigerians have internet access, and over 80 million can access high-speed internet services.

The TTTR Forum served as an inclusive platform for licensees and the NCC to engage in non-discriminatory discussions on various industry matters, addressing concerns relevant to licensees and of national interest. The NCC encouraged stakeholders to provide feedback and propose potential solutions to the challenges faced by the industry, fostering collaboration for further growth and development.

Adeleke Adewolu Esq., the Executive Commissioner of Stakeholder Management at the NCC, emphasized the pivotal role played by effective policies and regulatory frameworks in facilitating the exponential growth of Nigeria;s telecommunications sector.

“This forum is therefore an opportunity for Stakeholders to seek clarifications from the Regulator especially as it relates to understanding regulatory obligations, obligations to the consumer and their collective responsibility to the sustainability of the industry. I encourage you to garner as much as you can from this forum,” he

The Executive Commissioner, Stakeholder Management of NCC said the Nigerian Communications Sector has proven to be pivotal to the growth and development of the national economy. The sector has continually ensured that the digital economy agenda of the Federal Government is established on solid foundations. It has also proven to be the catalyst for entrenching the activities of both the public and private sector in the digital space, seamlessly.

The Nigerian Communications Sector is indeed the pace-setter sector as far as the expansion of the frontiers for national development is concerned. This was further underscored by the recent deployment of the Fifth Generation Technology (5G) services in the Country which we believe will ensure that Nigeria maximizes the benefit of the 4th Industrial Revolution whilst being sufficiently prepared for any attendant risk that may occur.

“A market study has shown that the deployment of 5G Technology Services will result in $13.2 trillion in global economic value by 2035, generating 22.3 million jobs in the 5G global value chain alone. Thus, the Commission has played an effective role in placing the nation at a vantage position in order to reap these benefits,” Adewolu

The NCC;s Director of Licensing and Authorization, Engr. Mohammed Babajika,emphasized that advancements such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), Big Data, Network as a Service (NaaS), and Internet of Things (IoT) are reshaping service delivery in the telecom sector.

In response, the NCC is proactively reviewing its license categories and has developed a licensing framework for MVNOs.

This move aims to improve telecommunications output, expand quality mobile coverage, and bridge the connectivity gap for the unserved and undeserved population across Nigeria.

The Nigerian Communications Sector has emerged as a driving force for the nation;s economic growth and development. It has spearheaded the establishment of a digital economy and played a pivotal role in the integration of digital solutions within both the public and private sectors. With the recent deployment of 5G technology, Nigeria
stands at the forefront of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, poised to reap substantial economic benefits and job opportunities.

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