Govt accentuates ICT leverage for economic growth

DAR ES SALAAM: THE government has reiterated its commitment to fostering collaboration with stakeholders to harness the potential of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in driving economic activities.

This emphasis was underscored by the Minister for Information, Communication and Information Technology, Mr Nape Nnauye, during the 2024 ICT competition award ceremony held at the University of Dar es Salaam (UDSM) and organised by Huawei.

Minister Nape highlighted the pivotal role of ICT in economic development, stating that it significantly contributes to job creation and the cultivation of experts through enhanced research and innovation.

“The government is resolute in its efforts to cooperate with various stakeholders to advance the digital transformation agenda,” Mr Nape stated.

The minister highlighted the government’s initiative to develop a digital economy strategy framework aimed at leveraging technology to propel economic growth.

Acknowledging the importance of nationwide connectivity and integrated ICT systems, Minister Nape outlined the government’s commitment to building ICT skills, strengthening cybersecurity measures and promoting local expertise through research and innovation endeavours.

Mr Nape commended Huawei for its notable contribution to enhancing ICT skills and knowledge among Tanzanian youth, particularly through engagement in various competitions.

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Recognising the imperative of cultivating sufficient ICT expertise domestically, Mr Nape lauded Huawei’s initiatives as instrumental in achieving this objective. He also commended Tanzanian youth for their innovation-driven approach in addressing societal challenges amidst the ongoing digital transformation.

Highlighting the impact of ICT capacity-building initiatives such as digital clubs and zonal innovation centres, Minister Nape noted their positive influence on government endeavours. He cited the significant progress made by Tanzanian startups, which have generated substantial employment opportunities and attracted significant investments in recent years.

Furthermore, he unveiled the government’s plan to establish a new national ICT policy aimed at providing comprehensive guidelines for sectoral development.

Echoing this sentiment, Mr Deogratius Ndejembi, the Minister for State in the Prime Minister’s Office (Labour, Youths and People with Disabilities), reaffirmed the government’s commitment to collaborating with companies to enhance capacity and skills among Tanzanian youths for increased employability.

Minister Nape stated that out of 21,000 youths, 3,702 have secured employment opportunities within and outside the country through the internship programme offered under his ministry and the government aims to increase this number by building more capacity for the youth.

In alignment with national development goals, Huawei’s Country Director in Tanzania, Mr Damon Zhang, affirmed the company’s dedication to supporting the government’s objectives of fostering an educated society and a robust, competitive economy.

He reiterated Huawei’s commitment to nurturing more ICT engineers and scientists through ongoing capacity-building initiatives. Expressing gratitude for their recognition, one of the award recipients, Mr Dickson Mram from UDSM, highlighted how the competition had enriched their knowledge and skills, enhancing their prospects in the job market.

The awards ceremony honoured approximately 15 student and instructor winners from UDSM, the University of Dodoma (UDOM), and the Dar es Salaam Institute of Technology (DIT), among 15,000 participants from across 15 sub-Saharan countries. Notably, three students and one instructor qualified for the 2024 global competition in China.

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