Cisco has said that Nigeria needs between 30,000 and 70,000 Information Technology workers to bridge the gap in networking professionals.
The networking company, however, lamented that tertiary institutions in the country were not producing enough Information and Communications Technology graduates to meet this demand.
It stated this after a meeting of Cisco Networking Academy instructors at the University of Lagos.
The General Manager, Cisco, English – West Africa, Mr. Dare Ogunlade, told our correspondent that governments also urgently needed to deploy policy and training programmes if the gap in networking professionals must be bridged.
He said that should governments fail to do this, “the global shortage of skilled Internet providers (networking professionals) would be at least 1.2 million people in 2015.”
The INSEAD Business School’s ‘Global Talent Competitiveness Index 2014’, co-authored by Cisco, supported the statistics.
According to the latest Cisco Visual Networking Index, ‘Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast: 2014-2019 forecast’, mobile data traffic is expected to grow 11 folds over the next five years in Nigeria, which is a compound annual growth rate of 63 per cent – two times faster than the expected fixed IP traffic growth.
This highlights that connectivity is accelerating at a fast pace in the country, thus creating a growing need for skilled ICT professionals.
Cisco said that the lack of young ICT professionals was not limited to Nigeria. “Increased connectivity, the Internet of Everything, rising digitisation of all business activities, globalisation of trade and travel, and economic growth globally has created the same problem in a number of countries globally,” Ogunlade said.