ICT to help Malawi’s battered economy

BUSINESS

|
Image: Moses Kunkuyu. By BiztechAfrica
Moses Kunkuyu

By Gregory Gondwe, Blantyre, Malawi

Malawi’s Government says it plans to use ICTs to help recover the battered economy. For this reason, ICT has been included in the Malawi Economic Recovery Plan (ERP), which is now being popularised.

Information and Civic Education Minister Moses Kunkuyu told a public awareness meeting of the ERP in Blantyre that ICT is one of the key drivers of economic growth.

“ICT would put the country on the right economic footing through introduction of several system upgrades and setting up of high grade interconnectivity,” said Kunkuyu.

He also said ICT would enable digitisation of the broadcasting sector, in addition to creating platforms such as e-government, e-learning and e-commerce.

On page 12 of the 21-page-ERP says Government will aim at improving usage and adoption of electronic and online services; availability of service; geographical coverage; and usage of modern broadcasting technology and reducing communication costs by among other things improving the regulatory framework for the sector.

The plan also says this would also be achieved through the liberalization of the mobile telecommunications sector which will in the end encourage new international entrants.

Ensuring liberal regulatory environment regarding international ICT gateway licenses is another means, the plan hopes will take up to achieve this.

At the sensitisation meeting, the information and civic education Minister observed that digitisation of the broadcasting sector would boost the broadcasting industry as the process would enable registration of more television and radio stations.

“This will have multiplier effects like a booming TV/radio programmes production industry, which has a very high potential to create jobs since the numerous radios and TVs will definitely outsource their programming functions to achieve quality,” said Kunkuyu.

In line with the Economic Recovery Plan, Kunkuyu said government will improve usage and adoption of electronic and online services, while on the other hand improving courses at the National College of Information Technology (NACIT).

Kunkuyu says ICTs will ensure availability of e-services, usage of modern broadcasting technology and reduction of communication costs by improving the regulatory framework for the sector, liberalising the mobile telecommunications sector to encourage new international entrants.

E-Government

The plan foresees platforms like e-government hosting all government departments on a shared hub, which will be interconnected with all government sectors allowing all government files to be accessed using computers used by government officers.

This, the minister said, would improve efficiencies and cut costs such as travel, since capacity will be made available for video conferencing and document exchanging.

Through e-commerce, Kunkuyu said, the business community will also utilise ICT for its growth in particular and the national economic growth in general.

The business community will be able to transact through the internet which in turn will enable fast acquisition of goods.

“This would increase economic activities within and outside Malawi while on the other hand e-learning would push up literacy levels so that we have a literate nation as anyone will access education qualifications through electronic studies,” said Kunkuyu.

According to the ERP, the baseline survey of April 2012, telephone lines per 100 population is at 36.3, but it targets to reach 41.23 by December 2013.

The same base line survey puts cellular line subscribers per 100 population at 0.80 while internet users per 100 population at 20. However, it is hoped that by December 2013, cellular subscribers will reach 0.83 while internet users will be at 23.49 per 100.



Share the News

Get Daily Newsletter

Search News

comments powered by Disqus

MORE BUSINESS NEWS

Collymore: PPP transparency to fuel Africa’s renaissance

Africa’s renaissance will be fueled by transparent partnerships between governments and private businesses working to improve the livelihoods of the continent’s population, Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore has predicted. Read More

Lack of technology bane of Nigeria’s SMEs, says Matt O’Bell chief

Bola Olayinka, Ademide Malumi and Dare Ojo-Bello Aside financial constraints, the non-application of technology has been identified as one of the constraints of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Nigeria. Read More

Telecom M&A and digital convergence to lead deal activity in Africa

TMT Finance is teaming up with IHS Towers, the largest mobile telecommunications infrastructure provider in Africa, Europe and the Middle East, to bring an international audience to Africa’s technology hub, Lagos, for the first event of its kind in Nigeria. Read More

Reach for Change Africa calls for strengthened social entrepreneurship

Reach for Change Africa is calling on social entrepreneurs, NGOs and government to play their role in strengthening the social entrepreneurship sector in Africa on International Day of Youth 2016. Read More

Stanford Seed Entrepreneurs join top Silicon Valley business leaders at Global Summit

Afolabi Abiodun, CEO of Nigeria-based telecommunications company SB Telecoms, couldn’t quite believe his eyes as he stood on Stanford University’s bustling Silicon Valley campus recently.  Read More

Etisalat, YuuZoo launch e-commerce portal for SMEs

Nigeria’s most SME-friendly telecommunications operator, Etisalat, in partnership with Singapore’s YuuZoo Corp, has unveiled a bespoke e-commerce platform, SME Arena, to facilitate the growth of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in Nigeria. Read More

Mstore plans $50m African expansion

Midcom Group has announced expansion plans aimed at making its Mstore the largest mobile and electronics retailer in Africa. Read More

*astTECS Expands Operations in Africa

*astTECS, a leading provider of Enterprise Telecom Technology Products and Asterisk based Open Source Communication Solution, is expanding its Africa footprint with a presence in Ghana and Botswana. Read More

The Tech Revolution: Sage Sets out the Vision for African Businesses

Sage, a market leader in cloud accounting software used its global Sage Summit 2016, held this week in Chicago, to outline its strong commitment to future technologies, with a focus on new and existing initiatives that power business growth.   Read More

Francistown Barclays gets cardless

Cardless cash deposits have been launched in Francistown. Read More

PRESS OFFICES

Sage EnterpriseSAP AfricaTrust PayVMWareSamsung ElectronicsMitsumi DistributionPhoenix DistributionMTN BusinessSchneider ElectricMultichoiceMicrosoft 4AfrikaNetworks UnlimitedArbor NetworksEricssonTigo Ghana

FEATURED STORY

Financial services sees AI as both opportunity and threatFinancial services sees AI as both opportunity and threat

Banking is already a key area where technology is having an impact throughout Africa, and a new survey assesses the impact artificial intelligence will have on this sector.

Advertisement

IN DEPTH

Access and Use of ICT stats releasedAccess and Use of ICT stats released

Statistics Botswana has released the first results of the 2014 Information and Communication Technology Household Survey.

COMPANY NEWS

Tigo explores options to give customers a greater choice for 4G services in Ghana

Following her recent visit to Ghana, Cynthia Gordon, the CEO of Millicom Africa, has emphasized the remarkable growth opportunities in data and Tigo’s commitment to giving customers ...