The information and communication technology sector last year generated revenue of almost N$2.7 billion from about N$454 million invested, while 7 141 people are employed in the industry. This is according to the infrastructure development pillar of the Harambee Prosperity Plan (HPP) II.
On the state of ICT development in the country, the government has established 26 multi-purpose community centres (MPCCs) across the country.
The centres have been equipped with internet connectivity. Under the second phase of the HPP, government plans to develop and prioritise the implementation of the broadband policy which dictates the international bandwidths, fibre network expansion, fixed broadband connectivity, mobile broadband connectivity, broadband connectivity to health facilities, schools, and household level as well as the establishment of the National Cybersecurity Incident Response Team.
Under the infrastructure pillar in the first phase, the ICT sector faced some challenges such as the approval and environmental clearance for new towers, availability of electricity, especially in the rural areas, vandalism and theft of communication infrastructure.
Schools connect or learners connect project funding which focuses to connect all schools, all learners and teachers households and to provide them with devices to access online learning requires significant funding.
The small population of Namibia was also a factor in the form of low economies of scale for the sector. Inadequacy or absence of government budget for capital expenditure in ICT infrastructure was another challenge. Through the second phase, the government planned some actions to mitigate the challenges such as to popularise public-private partnerships between government and the ICT industry, introducing of sector-targeted incentives for investors and creating partnerships to embark upon process re-engineering on processes deemed to be directly or indirectly hampering progress. About 83% of Namibia has access to 3G coverage and only 34% has access to 4G. About 81% and 86.2% of schools and health facilities, respectively, have access to the internet.