Contribution to Economy
Quick Facts on ICT in Africa
- The total revenue generated by the ICT sector in SSA is equal to 5-7% of the total GDP of a country. This is higher than any other region in the world.
- In the decade between 1995-2005, US$25 billion was invested in the information and communication technologies (ICT) sector in Sub-Saharan Africa, mainly by private operators and investors – resulting in the phenomenal expansion of networks.
Investment in Mobile
- Investment into the ICT sector in SSA has been primarily into mobile businesses. As a result, coverage of these networks has increased rapidly. It is estimated that at least 56% of the population of Sub-Saharan Africa is now living within range of mobile communications networks. This ranges from 10% in Ethiopia to 80-90% in Kenya, Uganda and Malawi and 100% in South Africa.
The African mobile market has been the fastest-growing market of all regions, expanding at twice the rate of the global market.
There are now at least five times more mobile than fixed-telephone subscribers in Africa.
By 2006, there were more than 110 million mobile subscribers in Sub-Saharan Africa. This means that approximately 17 percent of the population of Sub-Saharan Africa has a mobile phone, up from below 1 percent in the 1990s.
The price of Internet access is significantly higher in Sub-Saharan Africa than in other regions of the world. For example, the monthly cost of dial-up Internet access in Sub-Saharan Africa is approximately US$50 per month compared with US$12 per month in South Asia.
A basic 256 Kbps broadband connection in East Africa costs US$250-350 per month, compared to US$30 in Mexico, US$43 in India, and US$50 in Philippines.
High-speed Internet penetration rate is below 1 percent in Africa, compared to close to 30 percent in some high-income countries.
Network coverage is growing rapidly as companies invest and networks expand. A recent study carried out by the World Bank indicated that, if fully-effective market competition were to be established between mobile operators in Sub-Saharan Africa, networks would expand to cover up to 90% of the region’s population.
Did you know that...
The World Bank Group is the largest multi-lateral financier and provider of policy advice in the field of ICT in developing countries?
Over the past years, the World Bank Group has provided more than US$3 billion of funding in over 80 countries through its three financing arms; the International Bank of Reconstruction and Development (IBRD or World Bank), the International Finance Corporation (IFC), and the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA)?
World Bank has supported reforms in over 80 client governments and provided approximately US$750 million of loans for ICT related projects. This excludes lending projects that partially involve ICT applications but impact directly on other sectors such as health, education, trade, and finance?
Over the past decade, the World Bank has provided advice and technical assistance on sector reform in 30 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, including seven post-conflict countries?
Since its first investment in the cellular sector in Africa in 1991, IFC, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group has mobilized around US$1 billion for cellular operators in Africa, about half of which was arranged with other financial institutions?
MIGA, as an agency that provides political risk insurance to foreign investments in developing countries, has supplied an additional US$700 million to the ICT sector through private investment guarantees?
ICT is one of the best performing sectors in the World Bank Group’s portfolio, both in terms of returns and development impact?