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Lai Mohammed Seeks Approval Of $500m Loan For NTA To Compete With CNN



Nigeria’s Minister of Information, Alhaji Lai Mohammed says the Nigeria Television Authority (NTA) will compete favourably with the likes of Cable News Network (CNN) if the $500 million loan his ministry is seeking is approved.

The Minister was quoted by The Guardian to have said this when he appeared before the senate committee on local and foreign loans.

Naijaparry understands the $500 million loan request is part of the $30 billion loan request sent to the National Assembly for approval by President Muhammadu Buhari last year.

The Minister said with the financial backing, NTA will be able to invest on digitalized equipment and necessary manpower.

“If this project is approved, there will be more visibility for our people in the music, fashion and film industries,” he said.

“In 2014, we made $23 million from music alone and about $53 million in 2019 and we are looking forward to making $83 million in 2025.

“You can imagine the kind of growth we will have if only we digitise all the NTA stations in the country.”

He added that the money is needed to meet the June 17, 2020, deadline set by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) for all members of the organisation to migrate from analogue to digital.

“Apart from agriculture, which is the largest employer of labour in Nigeria, especially the youths, the next largest employer of labour is the creative industry.”

“The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) in 2006 gave June 17, 2015 as deadline for all members of the organisation to migrate from analogue to digital.

“Regrettably, we were unable to meet the deadline along-side most countries in sub-Saharan Africa, the deadline was moved to 2017, which was not reliable and today the target is June 17, 2020,” he said.

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