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‘Zim needs to accelerate ICT penetration’

ZIMBABWE needs to accelerate information and technology communication (ICT) penetration to boost economic growth through fostering knowledge exchange and innovation, a local financial advisory firm has said.

At a time when the country is seeking to narrow the digital divide and unlock wider potential from various economic players to propel the economy to prosperity in line with Vision 2030 targets, enhancing ICT resource efficiency for households and enterprises has also emerged as key.

Speaking ahead of the annual technology conference and exhibition 2024 slated for mid next month in Harare, Global Renaissance Investments chief executive officer Ngoni Dzirutwe told NewsDay Business that ICT was key for economic development in Zimbabwe.

“In a world where technology is accelerating at an unprecedented pace, how can we harness its power to drive economic growth?”

“At the Annual Technology Conference 2024, we will be exploring the latest advancements in technology and their potential impact on the global economy. From AI [artificial intelligence] and robotics to quantum computing and beyond, this conference will examine the ways in which technology is transforming our lives and businesses.”

The adoption of ICTs is already impacting positively on service delivery through the introduction of e-government services to the general citizenry.

Private sector players are also transforming their operations using modern computerised technology, which has been credited for enhanced production efficiencies and reduced costs.

“Technological advancements have long been recognised as drivers of economic growth. From the industrial revolution to the digital revolution, new technologies have led to increased productivity and innovation,” he noted.

“But with the rapid pace of technological advancement today, there are questions to say that the acceleration of technology has a negative impact on economic growth. So, we will take a deeper look at the relationship between technology and economic growth and the potential implications of our current tech-fueled era.”

The internet penetration rate in Zimbabwe is estimated to be sitting at 40,52%, and the number of households with internet access at home is forecast at 3,24 million.

Running under the theme Acceleration of economic growth via technology, the conference will be headlined by ICT minister Tatenda Mavetera, Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe director-general Gift Machengete and NetOne chief executive Raphael Mushanawani, among other speakers.

Source | NewsDay


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