Economics • Technology

Digital economy is taking shape in Africa

23 Feb, 2017 • by Anaïs Sánchez
Digital economy is taking shape in Africa
Anaïs Sánchez
Written by Anaïs Sánchez

Before developing digital economy, we must talk about economic growth, i.e. about creating opportunities for lower-income segments to generate wealth. Specifically, young African could have the power of transforming population into producers and consumers, ensuring this way the economic development of the country in a more equitable and sustainable manner. But how?

Technology is a key factor in this economic development. Which services it can offer to the population? In the education sector, availability of digital content; in agriculture, it can provide important information to farmers related to their productivity. And this is just a small sample. Technology can bring great benefits to every sector you can imagine. It is easy, while technology is replacing existing infrastructure in developed countries, in Africa it can increase access to more affordable services instead of creating expensive physical infrastructure.

Evolution of this digital revolution needs some important changes in the African continent:

First, internet must be accessible for everybody. Fortunately, this key element does not stop improving. Internet penetration in Africa has grown to almost 30 per cent from just 11 per cent five years ago.

Second, increasing access to smart devices. Getting the right devices is crucial to ensuring access to opportunities. Good news: the number of smartphones across Africa has almost doubled to 226 million over the last two years.

Third, the cost of communication must be reduced. This situation is changing due to services such as Whatsapp.

Finally, an important factor is reducing the cost of creating technology solutions, i.e. a reduced cost of lean methodologies and open source platforms like GitHub can help improving African needs through a better access to development opportunities.

But do not worry, these changes are already taking place in Africa! It is the youngest continent populated, and the energy and ambition of this generation are reflected in the widespread emergence of technologic ecosystems that are growing in the continent day by day. And this translates into an increasing number of start-ups…

Are you one of those ambitious entrepreneurs willing to take the world?

email Newsletter

Business Opportunities

View All

Latest Jobs

View All
language Sponsored by
African Development Bank