The Federal Government will work with Africa Creative Market (ACM) to identify and develop the teeming talents in Nigeria's creative industry and train them on how to use emerging technologies, according to Kashifu Inuwa, director general of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA). This will improve Nigeria's and Africa's creative capabilities.
Inuwa made this known in Lagos while presenting a Keynote Address on "The Importance of Tech in the Creative Industry" at the Africa Creative Market (ACM) event, according to a statement released yesterday by the NITDA spokesman, Hadiza Umar. He emphasised that the strategic positioning of Nigerians at the forefront of technology-driven industry on the African continent will be made possible by emerging technologies.
Emerging technologies, according to him, are changing how people create, share, and consume content, but the content creator is still at the centre of it all.
Inuwa reaffirmed that the Federal Government, via NITDA, is prepared to work with ACM to develop talent and train people in how to use emerging technologies to excel and thrive in everything they do, adding that preparations are already being made to train one million app developers over the course of the next 18 months.
“We are partnering with ACM after this Summit to train you on Metaverse, Artificial intelligence, Blockchain and many more. We are identifying people that need the training and we will get the best trainers in the world to come and train the trainers,” he noted.
The NITDA boss challenged Africans to be part of the crop of people who will create Metaverse, as the days of playing the catch-up game by Africa are over.
He said, “The creation of Metaverse will help achieve three things. Firstly, it will ensure ownership and protect copyright. Before now, you can do your work and someone can take it and share it online without even making reference to the owner of that content at all. But with emerging technologies such as Blockchain, NFT, etc, it will help you to be recognized for your work. If anyone buys that work or shares, he will see the owner of the work.
“Secondly, it will create a source of income for you. Unlike before, well, I can see even now in most parts of the world, when an artwork is created, they sell it to one person and that’s it. But with technology, you can earn from every sale; with NFT, you can collect royalties, whenever your product sells in the market you will get some percentage from it and thirdly, it will take you to the global stage,” Inuwa maintained.
Emphasising on the value emerging technologies come with, Inuwa encouraged the audience to position themselves toward creating value from them.
“There is a lot of research saying that Metaverse will add between five to thirteen trillion US dollars to the global GDP by 2030. So, how are you positioning yourself to capture value from this? That’s why we are here today and that’s why the government is partnering with you to help build talents and support the course of building the Metaverse, because it is going to be basically driven by creativity,” the DG said.
The Internet, Inuwa noted, enables viewing of things but affirmed that with the Metaverse, users will have the sense of immersion, and it will help Africans in telling their indigenous stories to the rest of the world while also capturing the needed value.
“According to research, the creativity market or the creative economy is valued at almost six trillion US dollars but Africa is perhaps capturing only 1.4 percent of that value; today in the world African music is one of the best, if you want people to dance, you have to play the African music, so why are we not capturing value from it? It is because we don’t own the platforms. So, the only way we can capture the needed value is to be creating and being part of those platforms and allowing African characters to be seen on the platforms,” he added.