Facebook infrastructure and networking investment over the next five years will bring Nigeria’s gross domestic product to $19.6 billion, according to a report by Analysys Mason.
The study entitled ‘The Impact of Facebook Connectivity Initiatives in SSA’ says that growing Facebook connectivity through OTNx Investments may have a GDP effect of $2.5 trillion for Nigeria from 2020 to 2024.
The research firm estimated that Nigeria will be contributing $16.9bn to Facebook’s edge network and submarine investment, while Express Wi-Fi would boost the country’s GDP by $160.7 m.
Analysys Mason said all of Facebook’s connectivity initiatives will bring $57bn worth of economic benefits to sub-Saharan Africa from 2020 to 2024.
The study, in collaboration with infrastructure provider MainOne, says that 750 to 800 km of fiber is used in Facebook investment in OTNx.
“An estimated 700,000 people in Uganda and 300,000 people in Nigeria got online earlier than they would have without the OTNx investments, producing an economic impact of almost $4bn between 2020 and 2024,” it said.
Analysys Mason projected that Facebook’s investments in edge network and international capacity across sub-Saharan Africa will cause total Internet traffic to rise by nine per cent by 2024.
“Based on the GSMA and Deloitte study, this higher traffic could increase the GDP-per-capita growth rate by 0.12 percentage points in each of the next five years, equivalent to a cumulative GDP contribution of more than $53bn across sub-Saharan Africa over the next five years,” it said.
The study says some of the economic benefits include increasing operators’ ability to expand large network coverage and making it easier for more people to go online.
This increases in web and Web traffic have been interpreted by researchers to mean that people can communicate more closely with each other and trade online.
All these activities generate advantage for individuals and more general economic and social benefits by enhancing health and welfare outcomes, skills and training, job development and productivity, according to the study.
Facebook Director of Public Policy Kojo Boakye commented on this article that the technology company is committed to Africa , in particular to boost the continent’s global competitiveness.
He said, “Over the last three years we’ve heavily invested in infrastructure and connectivity initiatives that aim to affordably connect people on this continent and create tangible social-economic benefits.”
“These efforts are part of a complex solution that requires all stakeholders – including mobile operators, infrastructure providers and governments – to work together for the common good.”