Italian Firm Moves Into Nigerian Telecom Sector

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Lagos – Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) and Italian have agreed to partner to strengthen the proposition by Telecom Italia Sparkle (TIS) to be a player in the Nigerian telecom sector.

The proposition was made  when the Deputy Head of Mission at the Embassy of Italy in Abuja, Tarek Chazli, paid a courtesy visit to the NCC in Abuja.

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Accompanied by Stefano Olivieri, TIS Head of Sales, Africa & Middle East; and Dindam Killi, a Senior Associate at Aluko & Oyebode – consultants to TIS, Chazli stated that Telecom Italia Sparkle as a leading player in international telecom business recognises the place of Nigeria in Africa’s telecom ecosystem and desires to be a player in the telecom sector.

Chazli noted that Nigerians and Italians are great users of mobile communications. He added that Nigeria is “a regional leader in mobile communications, a strategic market and an important hub”, so it is just natural that TIS is interested in the Nigerian market, and it is going to add value to the Nigerian market.

Speaking at the meeting, Olivieri informed the management of NCC that as a key player in the Italian, Brazilian, Burundian, Tanzanian and other telecom markets, TIS’ entry into the Nigerian market holds a great promise for deepening the transformation of Nigerian telecom ecosystem. He said many of globally-used ICT applications are already on TIS backbone. Therefore, the company has huge contents to promote robust data services and cause expansion in businesses for the benefit of Nigerians. He also affirmed that TIS is particularly mindful of security of contents and applications on its networks.

In  his remarks, Adeleke Adewolu, the executive commissioner stakeholder management at NCC, who received the envoy and the TIS team on behalf of Prof. Umar Danbatta, the Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, thanked Chazli, Olivieri and Killi for the visit.

He also expressed delight at TIS’ passion and enthusiasm towards the Nigerian telecom industry. Adewolu informed TIS about the strides made by the Commission and its commitment towards ensuring pervasiveness of broadband.

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He  stated that NCC has licensed infrastructure companies that will ensure the cascading of terrestrial fibre to every local government area of Nigeria. He also revealed that soon, a blueprint will be unveiled by the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Ali Ibrahim Pantami, defining the roadmap for deepening the digital culture in Nigeria. “So, you are coming at an auspicious time,” he added.

Adewolu promised to transmit the letter from TIS to the EVC and to the Management for consideration. He directed the NCC’s Director of Licensing and Authorization, Mohammed Babajika who was also present at the meeting, to hold a discussion with TIS on its proposal and pending application for license.

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