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Broadcast digitisation to yield $1.1b to economy – FG

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FEDERAL Government has disclosed that digital switchover (DSO) will add  $1.1 billion to the economy. This money will be made  from the collection of TV licences and digital access fees.

  This was disclosed by the Ministrer of Information, Lai Mohammed while briefing journalists at the end of the sixth virtual Federal Executive Council, (FEC) meeting presided over by , at the Council Chamber, Presidential Villa, Abuja, yesterday.

According to the minister, the spectrum that would be vacated once the analogue to digital migration has been completed “will fetch $1 billion on its own.”

 “The number one job creator under the Ministry of Information and Culture is the Digital Switch Over (DSO) in broadcasting, which is set to create 1 million jobs in the next three years through the manufacturing of set-top-boxes (decoders) and TV sets, TV and Film production, as well as TV and Online advertising and Data, among others.

“Of course, the DSO will also fetch $100 million from the collection of TV licences and Digital Access fees, as well as $1 billion from the sale of the spectrum that would be vacated once the analogue to digital migration has been completed,” he said.

 “The presentation centered around the eight deliverables given to the ministry, and they include the execution of a proactive media strategy to communicate the policies and achievements of government; promoting tourism; promoting a positive Nigerian brand through local content in film, music, software, arts, and fashion as well as job creation.

“This should not be a surprise, considering the negative impact of COVID-19 on the economy. While the pandemic has affected all sectors in Nigeria and around the world, it has hit the Creative Industry harder than any other sector, because the industry is the most people-centered. With social distancing and the ban on mass gathering, the industry is now grappling at straws,” he said.

Mr Mohammed said the ministry has so far rolled out the DSO in five states (Enugu, Osun, Kwara, Kaduna and Plateau) as well as the Federal Capital Territory.

He assured the DSO will be rolled out to all parts of the country.

He also said the ongoing reform of the broadcast and advertising industries is aimed at strengthening the industries “so they can live up to their billing and generate more job opportunities.”

The minister emphasised that in the reforms proposed in the broadcast industry, it will, among others, propel revolutionary advantages in the area of promoting entrepreneurship in the local industry.

“As for the advertising sector, bringing Nigeria’s TV advertisement market to what it should be, which is three times its current size, could result in an additional $200-$400 million revenue to the industry, in addition to creating thousands of jobs.

In the Minister of Information’s presentation during FEC, he observed that the creative industry has suffered badly under COVID-19.

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