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President Buhari receives MTN Group, Pantami as Company plans fresh $1.6 billion investment in Nigeria



MTN Group
The Federal Government has reiterated committed to providing an enabling environment for businesses to succeed, as partnerships between the public and private sectors remain the most viable means of bringing prosperity to the masses.

President Muhammadu Buhari gave the assurance Tuesday as he received the Chairman, MTN Group, Mr Mcebisi Jonas, and the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Pantami, at State House, Abuja.

“I am pleased to hear of the progress you are making in Nigeria, especially in supporting our digital inclusion programs. Your proposed projects, such as the rural telephony project, will surely complement our economic diversification and financial inclusion programs by connecting the producers based in rural areas to consumers located in our major towns and cities,” the President said.

He said government was looking at ways to increase the level of security across critical national infrastructure, noting that it would guarantee seamless service delivery and also facilitate investments across the country.

“Your desire to promote financial inclusion is also a welcome development as we seek to use innovative digital technologies to integrate the unbanked across the country.

“On our part, we are also committed to ensuring that you are given the right business environment to thrive in Nigeria.  For example, the lingering Right of Way (RoW) issue has finally been resolved on the 22nd of January, 2020 after a meeting between the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy and the Nigerian Governors, under the auspices of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum.    This resolution will make it easy for MTN and any other operator to roll out fibre across the country for a maximum amount of N145 per linear metre.

MTN Group

From left to right: Chairman, MTN Group, Mr Mcebisi Jonas observes as President Muhammadu Buhari exchanges greetings with the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Pantami

“We are in the process of releasing an Executive Order on Critical National Infrastructure to ease your concerns regarding the security of your equipment.  I have also directed the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy to liaise with the Inspector General of Police to ensure the protection of critical telecom infrastructure across the country.

“We urge you to continue to support our efforts by improving the Quality of Service (QoS), downward price review of data and other services in view of your large market in Nigeria. We note that Nigeria is MTN’s biggest market in Africa, accounting for approximately one-third of your total annual revenues and we want you to take this into account when creating a pricing structure for our market.

“We seek greater investment in unserved and underserved areas and collaboration with Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) to bring down the cost of smartphones.

“I unveiled and launched the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS) for a Digital Nigeria on the 28th of November, 2019. In line with your plan to support to assist in digitizing the economy, we urge you to lend your support in the implementation of the Policy.

“I therefore seize this opportunity to request that you continue to partner with Government at all levels to ensure that Nigerians in every part of the country experience the benefits of digital technology.

MTN plans fresh investments in Nigeria


The MTN Group Chairman said he was visiting along with top executives of the telecoms company to show appreciation to President Buhari, “because most of the issues we raised during your visit to South Africa have been addressed, and there is progress on the remaining ones.”

MTN Group

President Buhari in a group photograph with the team from MTN Group

He said the Group has utmost commitment to investing in Nigeria, and would commit the sum of $1.6 billion from its operations in the country to strengthen its network and systems.

“We are fully aligned with the strategic agenda of government, and are committed to strengthening the digital economy of the country,” Mr Jonas said.

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