The Federal Government on Tuesday disclosed that Digital Switch Over will generate at least 840,000 jobs in the country.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, made this known at an interactive session with the Senate Committee on Information and National Orientation alongside the 13-Member Ministerial Task Force on DSO project.
The Minister also informed the lawmakers that the DSO will begin operation fully on April 29.
Mohammed added that the DSO had gone live in the Federal Capital Territory, Kwara, Kaduna Enugu and Osun States.
He said: “The manufacturing of Set Top Boxes or decoders alone is capable of creating between 40,000 and 50,000 jobs.
“TV Production can create 200,000 jobs.
“Film Production can generate 350,000 to 400,000 jobs.
“Distribution, which entails supplying the market with Set Top Boxes,TVs and Dongles for the internet, will require at least 100,000 wholesalers, retailers, electricians, installers, marketers and payment solution providers in order to cover the entire country, while TV and Online Advertising can create a further 50,000 jobs.
“These are just some of the job opportunities from a successful DSO Project.
“Distinguished Chairman and Members, ahead of the impending massive rollout, we have taken some steps to create the enabling environment for the DSO to succeed, for local content to thrive, for indigenous producers to be more engaged and for the local advertising market to grow.
“Some of these measures have generated a lot of controversy and triggered a push back from some quarters, but we remain undaunted in implementing them for the benefit of our people.
“We have carried out an unprecedented reform of the broadcasting industry because we know that there is a nexus between those reforms and the success of the DSO.
“The amendments were necessitated by the need to boost the local content in Nigeria, curb anti-competitive and monopolistic tendencies and boost advertising revenues.
“I will just mention some of the amendments.
“We have amended the Code to curb monopoly and exclusivity of programme content in order to create room for the local industry to grow.
“For example, the pay TV sector of the Broadcast Industry had been controlled by foreign interests, while indigenous efforts to compete have been frustrated or weakened by the established control of the big monopolies.
“It will interest you to know that to date, the National Broadcasting Commission has licensed over 30 Nigerian pay T companies, but only one is currently struggling to break through.
“This is not acceptable.
“The monopolies exclude many Nigerians from enjoying or having access to premium content, especially in the area of sports and movies.
“With the amendment to the Code, anyone owning any sports rights must make such available to other parties in Nigeria, who may be interested in acquiring these rights.
“This obviously extends the opportunity for TV sports content to indigenous players.”