‘Technologies ’ll enhance Nigeria’s relevance, competitiveness’ – NACC President says

For Nigeria to be relevant and take advantage of opportunities offered by the emerging fourth industrial revolution, there is the urgent for the country to step up the use of new technologies to ease people’s lives and promote knowledge, development, welfare and trade.

Nigerian-American Chamber of Commerce (NACC) President Oluwatoyin Akomolafe said this at a business luncheon sponsored by MainOne and Itex Solutions in Lagos, during the week.

Speaking on the theme: “The Fourth Industrial Revolution and the Place of Nigeria: What’s next?”, Akomolafe said since the fourth industrial revolution builds on digital revolution, there is need for the country to create her own technology to address her peculiar needs instead of depending on foreign technologies.

“We need to re-strategise and begin to engage the youths with an overhaul of our educational system to accommodate such. Nigeria must narrow the gap between the technological potential and the policy agenda required to realise this,” he said.

The NACC president said in doing this, emphasis must be placed on exploring innovative approaches that are tried and tested to harness the benefits technological advancement provides.

He explained that the fourth industrial revolution, also known as Globalisation 4.0, is the current and developing environment where disruptive technologies and trends such as blockchain, artificial intelligence and augmented realty, among others, would dictate the pace of development among nations.

Akomolafe affirmed the chamber’s commitment to promoting the development of trade, commerce, investment and industrial technological relationships between the public and private sectors of Nigeria and the United States.

The Country General Manager, IBM Nigeria, Mr. Ernest Oladipo Faulkner, noted that the fourth industrial revolution, (4IR)-Industry 4.0), would improve quality of life, new products and services, smarter and more efficient workplaces as well as natural disasters’ preparedness.

According to him, emerging technologies would shape every industry’s response to the most pressing challenges, including artificial intelligence, cloud, mobile, blockchain, as well as the Internet of things

He said business leaders and the government needed to understand the impact the emerging industrial revolution so as to decide on how best to serve the interests of all of their stakeholders while steering a rapidly changing technological and political landscape to ensuring the nation’s security.

Faulkner, therefore, stressed the urgent need for all hands to be on deck so as not to be left behind in the 4IR.

While urging the private sector, including the original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and educational institutions to wake up to the challenges of the fourth industrial revolution, he urged the government to wake up to its responsibilities of providing the right infrastructure including electricity and internet penetration among others.

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