Investment in IT in Africa to rise 9.9 pct in 2011

4 April 2011

Johannesburg, South Africa, 4 April – Investment in Information Technologies in sub-Saharan Africa, including Portuguese-speaking African countries, is set to see growth of 9.9 percent this year and 11.5 percent until 2015, according to the International Data Corporation (IDC).

According to the IDC, an international consultancy for information and telecommunications technologies which takes the sector’s “pulse” in Africa, this market will continue on its post-crisis recovery trajectory, “with an impressive rate of growth in 2011.”

Expected investment in IT this year in the region is US$23 billion, or 9.9 percent more than last year, with software providing the drive after two digit growth in 2010, according to figures published last week by the IDC on the sidelines of the Africa CIO Summit 2011, in Johannesburg.

In 2010 investment saw growth of 12.6 percent, which was a string recovery after the previous year’s fall of 0.6 percent.

The IDC said there were “extremely positive” outlooks for the next few years, with average annual growth expected to be 11.5 percent until 2015.

In the Portuguese-speaking countries there are many large investments expected over the next few years in information and communication technologies.

Whilst in Mozambique the third mobile phone operator, Movitel – a consortium made up of Vietnamese company Viettel Telecom and Mozambique’s SPI – is currently in the launch phase, Cape Verde has a third generation mobile license out to tender.

In Angola, Movicel recently announced it would invest US$1 billion over the next four years in projects to expand and modernise its services and train its staff.

The Angolan market is expected to be one of the ones to receive most investments over the next few year, including the second undersea communications cable (US$92 million), creation of a national satellite communications system (Angosat – US$278,46 million) and installation of the national fibre optic network interlinking the capitals of the country’s 18 provinces.

The vice president of the IDC for the Middle East, Africa and Turkey, Jyoti Lalchandani, noted that research carried out by the company showed that the region’s executives were pushing for their networks to be interlinked.

“Executives are trying to leverage more links via undersea cables and manage domestic technological infrastructures using WAN (Wide Area Network) optimization and unified communication technologies,” said the IDC official at the conference.

According to figures published last week by Wireless Intelligence, Africa has more mobile links than Europe at a time when the market in Africa continues to see improved services and infrastructures.

In the final quarter of 2010, Africa had 547.5 million mobile links, of 20 percent more than in the previous year, whilst Western Europe has 523.6 million, which was a 1 percent fall in comparison to the same period of the previous year. (macauhub)