Abuja - Some stakeholders have called on the Federal Government to develop an integrated framework which would facilitate increased use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in national development efforts.
The stakeholders made the call in a communiqué issued at the end of the three-day e-Nigeria International Conference in Abuja on Thursday.
A communiqué was read by Vicent Olatunji, Deputy Director, Corporate Strategy and Research, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA).
The communiqué stated that the government should lead the campaign to patronise made-in-Nigeria ICT products so as to inspire indigenous enterprise and create institutional support for enterprise development.
It also stressed the need for Nigerians to appreciate made-in-Nigeria ICT products through increased patronage of locally made software so as to engender sustainable market and wealth creation.
“There should be massive campaign to encourage indigenous production of ICT products such as software and hardware as well as delivery of talent-based services.”
“It would serve as strategy for building a strong digital economy for the country.”
“Government should also intervene through pragmatic fiscal policies that grant tax waivers, protection of intellectual property and preference for locally made ICT products.”
“This is because no country can develop through over-reliance on foreign goods,” it said.
The communiqué urged governments at all levels to provide incentives for local equipment manufacturers.
“This should be done through tax rebates, lower bank interest rates and VAT exemptions,” it said.
The statement said that manufacturers should produce more computer components locally so as to create jobs and stimulate wealth.
It solicited the full implementation of NITDA’s guidelines on the Nigerian ICT Local Content Development and the National Software Policy to enhance the growth of the ICT sector.
It also stressed the need for NITDA to lead efforts to mobilise the private and public sectors toward the achievement of the objectives of the local content national strategy.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the e-Nigeria conference, which has “Local Content in ICT in Nigeria: The Journey so Far” as its theme, was organised by NITDA.