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Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Nigeria’s 122th on ICT development index


The much expected Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Development Index has been released by the global telecommunication regulator, the International Telecommunication Union (ITU)  with Korea scaling top of the ladder, while Nigeria is 122th among the selected economies as at 2010.
Apart from missing in the global ranking of Fixed (Wired) broadband subscription by speed and selected economies within the period under review, Nigeria came behind Ghana and India as well as Indonesia who ranked 120, 116 and 101 in that order.

However, with the Republic of Korea leading the pack on this index released under a theme: Measuring the Information Society, ITU stated that Sweden, Finland, Switzerland, United Kingdom, Japan, Austria, Germany, United States and Canada.

The aforementioned were ranked 2, 5, 8, 10, 13, 14, 15, 17 and 26 in that order.

ITU said, the latest figures released at the weekend showed that information and communication technology (ICT) uptake continues to accelerate worldwide, spurred by a steady fall in the price of telephone and broadband Internet services.

The new data, released in ITU’s flagship annual ICT report ‘Measuring the Information Society 2011’, ranked the Republic of Korea as the world’s most advanced ICT economy, followed by Sweden, Iceland, Denmark and Finland.

A key feature of the report is the ICT Development Index (IDI), which ranks 152 countries according to their level of ICT access, use and skills, and compares 2008 and 2010 scores.

Most countries at the top, ITU noted the ranking were from Europe and Asia Pacific in addition to the United Arab Emirates and Russia ranking first within their respective regions and Uruguay coming highest in South America.

ITU measurement indicated that Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Viet Nam, and Russia were some of the most dynamic countries between 2008 and 2010, with all of them making substantial improvements in their IDI ranks.

“All countries included in the IDI improved their scores this year,” ITU stated, which underlines the increasing pervasiveness of ICTs in today’s global information society.

“While the IDI leaders are all from the developed world, it is extremely encouraging to see that the most dynamic performers are developing countries,” said Dr Hamadoun Touré, ITU Secretary-General.

He added that the ‘mobile miracle’ is putting ICT services within reach of even the most disadvantaged people and communities.

“Our challenge now is to replicate that success in broadband,” he declared.

ITRealms Online gathered that this report showed that while ICT and income levels are closely related, getting the right public policy mix could drive faster take-up and a number of countries, including Australia, Japan, New Zealand and the Republic of Korea have higher IDI levels than their income level would predict.

ITU also stated that the IDI combined 11 indicators into a single measure that could be used as a benchmarking tool globally, regionally, and at national level, as well as helping track progress in ICT development over time.

“It measures ICT access, use and skills, and includes such indicators as mobile cellular subscriptions, households with a computer, fixed and mobile broadband Internet subscriptions, and basic literacy rates,” ITU said.

For the first time this year, the report stated that the IDI’s ‘ICT use’ sub-index grew more than the ‘ICT access’ sub-index, reflecting the fact that many countries have reached saturation levels in terms of basic ICT infrastructure and are becoming active ICT users.

Remmy Nweke

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