The Governments of India and Nigeria are set to forge closer cooperation in a determined effort to accelerate growth in Information and Communications Technology sectors with a view to boost both countries’ economies through greater penetration and use of advanced technologies and services.
This is the pivotal focus of a two-day international conference and exhibition, under the auspices of Indo-Africa relations, scheduled to hold on September 6th and 7th at the Eko Hotel, Lagos, and organised by the Telecom Equipment and Services Export Promotion Council (TEPC), an organisation set up by the Government of India to promote and support export of telecom equipment and services.
Manoj Sinha, the Indian Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Communications, in a personal letter to his Nigerian counterpart, His Excellency, Barrister Abdul-Raheem Adebayo Shittu, Nigerian Minister of Communications, wrote that “India has emerged as one of the prominent trade partners for Africa,” adding that both regions “have shown complementarities for business to expand and grow.”
Specifically, Mr. Sinha wrote: “IT and Telecom form the backbone for the growth of any country and Africa has been one of the fastest growing markets worldwide in ICT adoption and communication technology.”
To emphasize “the relationship and commitment between India and African countries, Government of India has proposed to host the 3rd edition of Indo-Africa ICT Expo 2017 in conjunction with IT and Telecom Summit,” hence the need for collaboration of both countries’ ministries in charge of communications.
He stated: “I request your ministry along with ICT departments to be partner for the event,” which he explained “would bring together over 100 ICT companies from India and many more from ICT sector from Africa and attract over 2000 visitors.”
Barrister Shittu on his part praised the idea of the Indo-Africa ICT conference and promised Nigeria’s cooperation and participation to ensure a successful and worthwhile event for the good of India and Nigeria as well as the ICT industry in general.
“We are delighted about the idea of this event, and from Nigeria we will put in our best to ensure the programme comes out very well,” he said, adding that India and Nigeria share a lot in common, and ICT currently being very topical globally, it is in the interest of both countries to pool resources to deliver results for their common peoples.
According to details for the event, a key highlight will be an ICT Ministers’ Roundtable Meeting scheduled for September 6, on the guiding theme ‘Digital Vision of the Developing Nations,” a platform for ministers to present and share the ICT visions of their countries over the next five years thereby showcasing partnership opportunities that such vision would bring to the industry at large for the two regions.
TEPC is working in conjunction with the National Association of Software and Service Companies, (NASSCOM), which is the premier trade body and the chamber of commerce of the IT-BPM industries in India. NASSCOM is a global trade body with more than 1800+ members, which include both Indian and multinational companies that have a presence in India.
The organisers are also partnering with industry associations in Nigeria, including the Information Technology Association of Nigeria (ITAN), Association of Licensed Telecom Operators of Nigeria (ALTON), Association of Telecom Companies of Nigeria (ATCON), Institute of Software Practitioners of Nigeria (ISPON), Nigeria Computer Society (NCS) as well as the Computer and Allied Products Dealers Association of Nigeria (CAPDAN) to make the event a full industry-focused programme.
ITAN President, Mr. Tayo Adeniyi, ALTON Chairman, Engr. Gbenga Adebayo, ATCON President, Engr. Olusola Teniola, among others, have so far been listed to speak at the event, while more are to be confirmed as the days go by.
From India, the speakers include Mr. Shyamal Ghosh, Chairman of TEPC, Sanjay Nayak, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director at Tejas Networks, Mr. M Soundarakumar, Director, Centre for Development of Telematics, Bangalore, Shivendra Singh, Vice President and Head of Global Trade Development at National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM), and Mr. Rajesh Tuli, Managing Director of Coral Telecom which is the leading Indian communication solutions provider with significant focus on the defence and next generation communications space.