Experts urge Lagos to maintain digital policy consistency


Dayo Ojerinde

Technological experts have stressed the need for governments to maintain policy consistency for technological innovations to drive development, saying Nigeria is gradually adjusting to the realities of the fourth industrial revolution.

According to a statement on Wednesday, the experts, at the ongoing Lagos State Economic Summit, Ehingbeti, opined that policy consistency would encourage innovation and stimulate sectoral growth.

The head of advisory, KPMG, Mr. Joseph Tegbe, while commenting on the strategy that must be leveraged to lay the foundation for the fourth industrial revolution in the state, said fiscal tax incentives and tax waivers were important for technological innovators.

“Really, research and development incentives for technological innovation have not been fully implemented in this country.  This is something we need to look at especially for young startups that are leveraging creative technology and unleashing innovation. Tax waivers even for local technological manufacturers are extremely important.

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“One thing that is also very critical is government’s consistency. We can put waivers in place, incentives in place; but if you implement tax and incentives in the first or two years and there is a reversal of policy. That will mean three-step forward and six steps backward,” Tegbe said.

On her part, Alice Tomdio of Paystack, said there should be a massive drive to get young people involved at an early age,

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She said, “If we want to transform Lagos, the idea starts from school. If you make people see this is viable, possible and there is value in working with software companies.

“It means a change in social attitudes and change in culture and teaches people that startups are good. There is a need to create awareness on building, creating and working in startups to change.”

The state Commissioner for Economic and Budget Planning who is also a Co-chair of the summit, Mr. Samuel Egube, said the event was organised for the state to encourage the private sector to take action.

He said, “This has created an ecosystem for both the public and private sector to partner and add value. The idea is not only about what the state government should do. Of course, there is a lot it should do, but what the private sector should do should also be discussed. Ehingbeti is a platform for both the state government and private sector to collaborate to achieve a common good.”

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