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Thursday, March 17, 2016

Ertem prescribes tripod economic plan for Nigeria



The Regional Director for the Middle East, Turkey and Africa at Intel Corporation, Mrs Cigdem Ertem has given a tripod prescription for Nigeria’s economic recovery, reports ITRealms.

Speaking at the The Economist Summit in Intercontinental Hotel, Lagos recently, Ertem said that what Nigeria needs now to improve the economy is to encourage innovation, entrepreneurship and diversification.

Nigeria, she said, is facing a new reality of lower oil prices, and structural forces undermining growth, hence technology, more than ever is now a lever that will help transform and diversify the economy.

“Intel focuses on supporting technology enabled industries and drivers of economic growth like Education, Finance & Banking, Manufacturing and the Professional Services,” she said.

As said by her, studies by the International Finance Corporation (IFC) show that approx. 96 per cent of Nigerian businesses are SMEs compared to 53 per cent in the US and 65 per cent in Europe. However SME’s contribute approx. 1 per cent of Nigerian’s GDP, compared to 40 per cent in Asian countries and 50 per cent in the US or Europe. 

Addressing the statistics, Ertem noted that the low level of contribution can be attributed to several constraints, including lack of funding, infrastructure, and low level of productivity; all of which can be bridged through technology.

”At Intel, we do more than power a PC, we empower and enable youth, and women in Nigeria and around the world to become a viable part of the global knowledge economy by providing support for them to develop relevant technology skills that will increase their opportunities in the market, and help them thrive as entrepreneurs, through programs like Intel She Will Connect, Intel Teach, and Intel Capital.”

Intel Capital continues to invest in innovative technology start-ups and companies in Africa, since 1991 Intel Capital and has invested over $1.2 billion, while Intel Teach and She Will Connect have trained over 150,000 teachers and 35,000 young girls and women in Nigeria respectively, in partnership with NGO’s, Government and Intel’s business partners.

Other speakers at the summit include Aliko Dangote, CEO Dangote Group; Dr. Okechukwu Enelamah, Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment; and Adebola Williams of Red Media.

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