Private sector asks Gov’t for reliable ICT infrastructure

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Although, Ethiopia has spent over three billion USD for telecom infrastructure by rolling out over 17 thousand fiber optic cables across the country, the business community is asking for more. They say more reliable ICT infrastructure is needed to grow the business environment.
“Most government portals such as wereda net have failed to provide services which means increased costs and wasted time for the business community,” Messay Hailmariam, CEO of Ronbit Consultancy said in a study he presented.
Of 33 federal institutions only six currently provide online service, according to the Minister of Innovation and Technology.
The limited capacity of ICT infrastructure and the failure to develop government portals are another problem.
“The Ministry of Innovation and Technology is working to improve the limited capacity of wereda.net by increasing the speed and bandwidth to modernize the country’s information technology system,” Getahun Mekuria Minister of Innovation and Technology said.
“The costly Internet will not make the Ethiopian business community competitive with international firms,” Messay adds.
“Developing a strategy for fostering mobile money services, can be a key enabler for improving access to finance that contributes for the growth of business in the country as business without ICT development is unthinkable,” Messay says.
According to a study the slow Implementation of National ICT strategies and programs, limited capacity and underutilized infrastructure such as fiber optics, data centers and lack of an on-line payment platform through which companies can buy/sell challenges the growth of business in Ethiopia.
It recommended that the government intervene to accelerate the rollout of high-speed broadband infrastructure and attract foreign firms and support business innovation and productivity across the economy in addition to pushing forward plans of partially privatizing the state-owned monopoly operator, ethio-telecom in hopes of bringing opportunity to enhance the benefits of advancement in communication infrastructures.