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MainOne advocates national strategy to grow local operators

By Ibukun Igbasan
19 October 2016   |   5:06 am
Connectivity and data solutions provider, MainOne has pitched for regulations and collaborations that will enable local providers become major players in the Nigerian telecommunications ...
Chidinma Iwe

Chidinma Iwe

Connectivity and data solutions provider, MainOne has pitched for regulations and collaborations that will enable local providers become major players in the Nigerian telecommunications sector thereby ensuring that the economy benefits optimally from the dividends in the sector.

According to Chief Information Security Officer of MainOne, Chidinma Iwe, partnership between the local telecoms operators in the Southern and Eastern blocks of the African continent has availed the companies to leverage on each other thereby, sharing infrastructure and support systems, which ultimately provided wider coverage and adequate services consumers in the region.

He pointed out that these alliances have retained the proceeds in the economy creating more jobs and ultimately an improved economy.

However, the Western African block still lags in initiating a regulation for a bond among its local firms, which has resulted into foreign operators investing their revenue outside the country. Consequently, this is short -changing the impact of more investments, more jobs, better services for the country and her citizenry.

Speaking on the Internet Exchange Protocol (IXP) traffic in the country, Chidinma advocated for an increase in the number of Internet local exchanges. According to a local IXP data, just a few numbers of technological firms in the country exchanged Internet traffic locally.

He further explained with the scenario of placing a contact call from Yaba to Victoria Island but, the telecom operator had to connect the call with a source in London before returning the call to Nigeria, which is why services are mostly slow because it consumes more bandwidth.

“Currently, latency in Nigeria is 10 seconds, while in London, 100 seconds.’’

According to him, the function of an IXP is to reduce the portion of an ISP’s traffic, which must be delivered via the upstream transit providers thereby, reducing the average per-bit delivery cost of their service.

According to a previous report, It meant that Internet traffic from Nigeria went directly to the foreign hubs thereby causing serious capital flight inform of transit charges paid to foreign ISPs by some of their Nigerian counterparts as some Internet Service Providers (ISPs) in the country still depended on hubs located outside the country, in places like Europe, United States and Israel.

Chidinma said that exchanging traffic locally would increase Internet speed, improve transmission line, ensure high speed delivery, reduce connection costs, connectivity delays (latency) and bandwidth thereby aiding the growth of local content App developers reduce foreign flights, and improve quality of service generating additional revenues that would boost the economy and the image of the country.

He further stressed that it will be cost effective and more efficient to manage internet traffic by keeping it in the country with examples like China that took certain measures that birthed the likes of Alibaba, Aliexpress and any more.

According to a report, Opera Mini’s market share in Nigeria stands at approximately 73 per cent making it Opera’s largest market in Africa (in terms of users) and third largest in the world. Facebook said it has 7.2 million daily users from the country with 97 per cent of them accessing the platform via mobile as the country has the highest number of mobile penetration, Africa especially Nigeria, have the largest number of young people.

Chidinma stressed that government should draft and implement a national strategy to ensure the country and her citizenry are the drivers and benefactors in this evolution.