Those who know have predicted that the Nigerian telecommunications sector will continue to keep the country afloat in the post Covid-19, despite the negative impact of the virus on the economy.
Specifically, they fingered three factors, which include investments made pre-covid-19, social media culture and data growths and ultimately, listing of MTN and Airtel on the Nigerian Stock Exchange, which they attributed to the foresightedness of the Nigerian Communications Commission, led by Prof. Umar Danbatta.
First to point this out is Nairametrics Financial Advocates, a financial resource company, with special focus on investor advocacy and business intelligence. According to Nairametrics, the telecom sector will be healthy in the midst of the blows from the impact of the deadly disease.
“We note that Nigeria’s key telecommunications companies have invested heavily in internet infrastructure in a bid to improve 4GLTE coverage across the country,” the vanguard Newspaper quoted the company as saying.
Nairametrics also noted that there is an increase in data usage owing to the Covid-19 lockdown, which has forced movement restrictions in various states like Lagos and Abuja, the country’s Federal Capital.
Meanwhile, a telecom industry watcher, Omoroh Chopinx has applauded the Nigerian Communications Commission for visibly forcing MTN Nigeria and Airtel Africa to list on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE).
While describing the telecom companies’ listing as good defensive stocks in this pandemic, he argues that such stock will provides consistent dividends and stable earnings regardless of the state of the overall stock market as they are presently seen as investors’ favourites at the Exchange.
This, the Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Stock Exchange, Oscar Onyema attributed mainly to the foresightedness of Prof. Umar Danbatta, the Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, Nigerian telecom regulator.
“Having MTN Nigeria listed in our market is a testament of The Exchange’s commitment to building a dynamic and inclusive market and creating channels for sustainable investment. Kudos to Danbatta’s foreight as this listing will promote liquidity for MTN Nigeria, enhance its value and increase transparency, as our platform remains one of the best avenues for raising capital and enabling sustainable growth for national development,” a national Newspaper quoted Onyema as saying.
He said the telecom regulator’s role in getting the telcos to be listed is unprecedented and creative; exploiting the then controversial situation to create investment opportunities for local and foreign investing communities.
While urging NCC to make listing on NSE a precondition for issuing operating license to players in the telecoms industry, Onyema believes such listing will provide value for capital gains and wealth creation in the market.