The government of Nigeria is desirous of a win-win relationship with the leading Information and Communication Technology (ICT) company in Africa and the Middle East, MTN, as the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari seeks ways to grow the country’s economy.
Speaking during a recent visit of officials of the MTN Group and MTN Nigeria to the presidential villa, Mr Buhari said, “Our hope is for operators like MTN to continue to focus on delivering quality service at reasonable prices. If we put our minds together, such win-win positions are achievable.”
The delegation from MTN Group and MTN Nigeria included the Group Chairman, Mr Mcebisi Jonas; President MTN Group, Mr Robb Shuter; Chairman MTN Nigeria, Mr Ernest Ndukwe; and MTN Nigeria CEO, Mr Ferdi Moolman. They were led to the villa by Nigeria’s Minister of Communications, Dr Ali Isa Patami.
On the government, the side was Buhari’s Chief of Staff, Mallam Abba Kyari; Secretary to the Government, Boss Mustapha; and Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigeria Communications Commission, Prof Umar Garba Danbatta.
Pledging to invest $1.6 billion into strengthening MTN networks and telecoms systems across Nigeria, Chairman of MTN Group, Mcebisi Jonas, told Buhari the company was “fully aligned with the strategic agenda of the government, and are committed to strengthening the digital economy of the country.”
Since their foray into the Nigerian market in 2001, MTN has paid more than N1.7 trillion in taxes, levies and other regulatory fees; over N18 billion spent through its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives; over $3.5 billion worth of businesses in Nigeria’s hospitality and entertainment industry, and invested over N3.2 trillion and counting into the Nigerian economy. The company is arguably one of the top 3 investors in the Nigerian economy, providing jobs to millions of Nigerians directly and indirectly.