MTN plans to invest $1.5 million (N640 million) in broadband access in Nigeria over the next few years.
Mr Karl Toriola, CEO of MTN Nigeria, revealed this plan during a visit by Nigerian embassy officials to the MTN Group office in Roodeport, Johannesburg.
He stated that this was in accordance with the Federal Government’s 2020-2025 National Broadband Plan and supported MTN Group’s strategy.
Amb. Muhammad Manta, Nigerian High Commissioner to South Africa, and Consul General Malik Abdul led a delegation to the MTN group.
Toriola stated that a new state-of-the-art headquarters would be built in Nigeria soon.
He also revealed that the MTN would reconstruct the Enugu-Onitsha expressway in exchange for tax remittances to the Federal Government, as part of a special arrangement to improve the country’s road infrastructure.
According to reports, MTN Group sold off portions of its shares in the Nigerian subsidiary in February in order to provide local investors with the opportunity to become shareholders in the leading telecom giant.
In the end, 661.25 million MTN Nigerian shares were issued, as opposed to the 575 million units originally planned.
Mr Ernest Ndukwe, Chairman MTN Nigeria, emphasized MTN Nigeria’s importance to the group’s operations, noting that Nigeria is one of their most important markets.
He expressed satisfaction that the government was putting in place a number of policies and programs to create a favorable environment for doing business in Nigeria.
Ndukwe went on to say that the government has prioritized the development of Nigeria’s digital economy as the next fastest growing sector.
In response, High Commissioner Manta praised the group for their interest in Nigeria and promised that Nigeria would create a conducive environment for companies like MTN to thrive.
The Consul General urged MTN to collaborate with the Missions in South Africa to develop a cohesive strategy to combat future Xenophobia threats.
“We have identified community engagement projects in order to rebuild trust and confidence in one another and to retell the story of Nigeria and its people.”
Abdul urged MTN to collaborate with the Mission in developing programs and content that would promote peace, social cohesion, and economic development between the two countries.
He urged them to work with the government to find a long-term solution to the senseless attacks on Nigerians.
“Nigerians are not xenophobic, but stories of victims and videos of incidents in South Africa incite attacks on South African companies in Nigeria.”