" ITREALMS: 10 foreign firms for UK/Africa ICT confab

Friday, March 10, 2006

10 foreign firms for UK/Africa ICT confab

ABOUT 10 foreign-based Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs) firms are slated to take part in the United Kingdom (UK) and Africa ICT conference taking place in the country between March 28 and 30.

The event has been divided into two sessions to hold at the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Abuja and Lagos.

Mrs. Lebarie Ukpong of the Trade Development section at the British Deputy High Commission, Lagos informed Business Champion that as part of the UK governments’ efforts to foster closer ties on ICTs with Nigeria and help bridge the digital divide, "the UK and Nigerian government through the Ministry of Communications is proposing to hold a joint 3-day event in Abuja and Lagos from 28 - 30 March 2006".

She also said that expectation is high as about 250 participants are being predicted to grace the event from the private and public sectors at each of the conference venues soon to be named.

These, she said, would be in addition to participants drawn from Nigerian and Ghanaian Ministers of Communications, senior government officials from Cameroon Ministry of Post & Telecommunications, which she said, have already committed to the event.

The UK official noted this event is part of the UK’s response to the 2003 World Summit on the Information Society declaration of principles, which, inter alia, called on developed countries to help countries such as Nigeria to bridge the digital divide.

Stressing that Nigerians are keen that ICTs should be at the forefront of the Federal Government’s drive to deliver the nation which she said is a highly prosperous country, with the availability of a high quality ICT infrastructure which is now widely accepted as being an essential pre-requisite for the development of national economies.

Cyber crime, she pointed out are seen as a real threat to this prosperity, and the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has been keen towards working with the UK government in order to tackle this problem.

The trade official pointed out that Nigeria is potentially a good market for UK ICT companies, hence the nation is considered to be the fastest growing telecoms market in the world, and has become an attractive destination for UK telecommunications investors.

Some of the issues to be deliberated upon include includes e- governance, policy formulation, spectrum planning and management, spam, cyber security, deployment of low cost wireless broadband in rural areas, convergence, mobile telephony, domestic manufacture of telecommunications equipment.

Key objective of the conference, she said, is to bring together key decision-makers, experts and business practitioners interested in the development of ICTs in Africa, even as the confab is intended to highlight the importance of ICTs for social and economic development.

In addition, the confab would provide an opportunity to share regulatory techniques and best practice; enable participants to access international thinking on policies and technology developments in the ICT field and showcase UK and Nigerian capability and new technologies in ICT.

1 comment:

Alex Warn said...

Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has been keen towards working with the New Trends UK government in order to tackle this problem.

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