‘Blockchain Tech will drive Nigeria’s digital economy’

Prof. Isa Ali Pantami, Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, has said the effective utilization of Blockchain technology will serve as a catalyst for developing it.

Blockchain is a shared, immutable ledger that facilitates the process of recording transactions and tracking assets in a business network.

The Minister made this known to industry stakeholders who converged recently at the American Business Council event, organized in partnership with the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

According to Pantami, the Federal Government is committed to building and enforcing regulations that will fast-track effective utilization of Blockchain technology for the development of the Nigerian digital economy.

At the event, Pantami delivered a keynote address on the ‘Applications of Blockchain Technology for Intellectual Property (IP) Enforcement’ at the American Business Council event, in partnership with the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

The Minister, who was represented by Salihu Abdulkareem Arsh of the National Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics (NCAIR), alluded to the fact that the theme of the event: “Blockchain for IP Enforcement; More than Crypto and NFTs,” was apt and timely, especially at a time when cryptocurrency was presently the headlines of financial losses.

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While observing that governments and businesses all over the world are realizing the powerful usability of Blockchain, Pantami affirmed that the Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy as well as its parastatals are not left behind, as they are inclined to employ the statutory responsibility towards innovative technologies, to develop corresponding strategies for a healthy ICT ecosystem that encapsulate emerging technology such as Blockchain.

He said, “It may interest you to know that one of the agencies under my supervision, the National Information Technology Development Agency, has developed a National Blockchain Adoption Strategy that seeks to facilitate effective utilization of Blockchain technology for the development of the Nigerian digital economy.

On the benefits of Blockchain technology, he said it represents a paradigm shift in how various companies protect their information exchange, adding that emerging technology provides a secure and fault-tolerant distributed ledger platform for transactions.

“No doubt, Blockchain technology has evolved greatly since the introduction of Bitcoin in 2008, the first decentralized peer-to-peer electronic cash system.

“Today, innovators in various fields are realizing the benefits. From medicine to agriculture, finance to governance, education to transport and across the global supply chain; many sectors are looking for ways to integrate Blockchain into their infrastructures,” he added.

The Minister noted that in today’s knowledge-based economy, an increasing share of business value was derived via intangible assets, which meant success often depended on the ability to manage and exploit IP.

Pantami said businesses require managers to effectively acquire, govern and commercialize copyright and patent-protected content.

“You would all agree that traditional businesses that rely on IP-protected material are confronting internal and external factors that pose several key challenges. Internally, unsynchronized IT systems do not enable data to flow, creating friction to locate and comply with copyrights under control.

Externally, firms are recently operating in more complex, and diverse business networks with the need to validate multiple IPs within a single transactions model,” he said.

Pantami to unveil books at NCC’s emerging technologies forum

Professor Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, Minister of Communications and Digital Economy will today publicly unveil two of his recent books at the Stakeholders’ Consultative Forum on Emerging Technologies, hosted by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).

According to a statement obtained by TechEconomy, the Minister said the first book is titled, “Datafication of Society to Foster an Internet Economy” and the foreword was written by the Secretary General of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), Mr. Houlin Zhao.

“Mr. Zhao has had a long distinguished career at the ITU and has served as the Secretary-General since 2014. The ITU is the oldest UN agency and is a specialized agency of the United Nations responsible for many matters related to information and communication technologies.”

The statement added that the second book is titled “Cybersecurity Initiatives for Securing a Country,” with the foreword written by the President of the International Federation for Information Processing (IFIP), Professor Mike Hinchey.

Professor Hinchey is a professor of software engineering at the University of Limerick, Ireland, and was previously Director of the Software Engineering Laboratory at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Goddard Space Flight Centre in Greenbelt, Maryland, United States of America.

He was the leading graduating student during his undergraduate studies and he had his post-graduate studies at both Oxford University and Cambridge University.”

Emerging technologies are playing a vital role in the development of digital economies around the globe.

“The two books of the Honourable Minister emphasize key aspects of emerging technologies, namely datafication and cybersecurity.

With respect to datafication, it shows how data- its generation, processing, and use play a critical role in determining success in the digital economy.”

“The book on cybersecurity discusses the importance of cybersecurity in protecting data and infrastructure to secure the digital economy of countries.

Mr. Zhao and Prof Hinchey, both renowned global ICT personalities will serve as special guests at the public presentation,” it added.

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