Nigerian Government revealed that it is working with the Indian Government to access $100 million concessional loan to develop Nigeria’s rural broadband connectivity.
Mr Adebayo Shittu, Minister of Communications, has made this known at the Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation (ITEC) Day held in Abuja on Thursday night.
He said: “Nigeria must be prepared take advantage of the available opportunities, one of which is in the securing of credit line for the development of rural backbone infrastructure.
“In India, as expansive as the country is, every area has sufficient broadband connectivity; everybody has access to online connectivity.
“This is the opposite in Nigeria. We have barely exceeded the 30 per cent connectivity rate.
“However, with this initiative, I believe within the next two months, we will have the opportunity of getting a credit line of $100m from India to develop rural infrastructure, such that without electricity, telecoms masts can function, as masts to be constructed via the credit line funding will be renewable based – that is solar-based.”
In his response, the Indian High Commissioner to Nigeria, Mr Abhay Thakur, said: “We (Nigeria and India) are working very closely on the rural broadband network project.
“India is deeply interested because we genuinely have a lot of expertise in the area of broadband network building, and reach to (the Indian) masses.
“We will examine the written report, and I am sure very soon, we will be in a position to tender out the project under the India Development Assistance, which is a very attractive soft loan funding for Nigeria.”