World Bank Reports: Internet Access Elevates 7% of Nigerians from Extreme Poverty

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World Bank Reports: Internet Access Elevates 7% of Nigerians from Extreme Poverty

A recent report from the World Bank titled “Digital transformation drives development in Africa” revealed that improved internet access over three years contributed to a seven percent reduction in extreme poverty in Nigeria and Tanzania. The report also highlighted an eight percent increase in labor force participation and wage employment as a result of exposure to internet access.

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The World Bank emphasized the positive impact of internet access, stating, “In 2023, a World Bank flagship report found that in Nigeria and Tanzania, extreme poverty declined by about seven per cent after three or more years of exposure to internet coverage, while labor force participation and wage employment increased by up to eight per cent.”

Andrew Dabalen, World Bank chief economist for Africa, underscored the significance of increasing mobile internet usage for inclusive growth on the continent. He noted that closing the uptake gap would enhance Africa’s potential to generate jobs and support economic recovery in an increasingly digitalized world.

Read Also: Africa Internet Governance Forum 2023, Convenes in Nigeria with Participation of 54 Nations

Over the past five years (2016-2021), sub-Saharan Africa experienced a remarkable 115 percent increase in internet users, driving economic growth, fostering innovation, and creating job opportunities. Despite this growth, Dabalen highlighted that the digital infrastructure coverage, access, and quality in the region still lag behind other areas. While 84 percent had access to 3G service and 63 percent to 4G mobile coverage by the end of 2021, only 22 percent were using mobile internet services.

Dabalen pointed out a significant gap between coverage and usage, especially for broadband, with 61 percent of people in sub-Saharan Africa having access to broadband but not utilizing it. The report suggests that increasing internet usage could further unlock the region’s potential for economic development and job creation.

Read Also: Maida Thrilled by Nigeria’s Achievements at World Radio Communications Conference 2023

 

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