Dr. Eugene Juwah, the Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission, says the current broadband penetration in the country stood at 10 per cent.
Juwah made this known at the Digital Sense Forum Series 2015, with the title: “IPv6 and Broadband Penetration.”
It was organised by Digital Sense Africa Media.
It held in Lagos on Thursday and Friday.
Juwah, who spoke through Tony Ojobo, the NCC’s Director of Public Affairs, said the country’s target was to achieve about 30 per cent penetration by 2018.
According to him, the nation’s ability to meet this target depends on infrastructure deployment being encouraged by the commission, via various initiatives.
He said there was a strong correlation between broadband penetration and the economy, which made every effort towards broadband a compelling case.
Juwah said: “Nigeria is one of the nations with the fastest in telecommunications. Our growth in the sector is regarded as a revolution, given the speed with which we grew from 2001 from about 400,000 telephone lines to now 145.5 million, as at April 2015.
“On the internet, more than 83 million Nigerian subscribers have access to the internet. So, the nation is as connected to the internet as most other parts of the world.
“Nigeria has great prospects and potentials for broadband, hence, the availability of a new internet addressing system in Internet Protocol version six (IPv6) means that these potentials can be harnessed as the nation continues to grow its broadband penetration.”
Juwah explained that IPv6 was an aspect of one of the solutions which evolved out the many efforts to propagate internet penetration and adoption.
Juwah said telephone lines across the world had been designed in such a way that when one made a call, it was received by another phone line.
He said in the same way, internet connectivity was achieved through internet protocol address system, which ensured that one computer connected to the internet saw the other.
The NCC’s boss said at the early development of the internet, IPv4 address space was developed with the capacity to accommodate 4.3 billion addresses.
Juwah said at the period, the number was seen as a very huge capacity that was probably not envisaged to be exhausted in several years, however, the phenomenal growth of the internet was already seeing off IPv4.
According to him, it was now known that sooner or later, there would be no IP address left on the IPv4 space.
He said: “This is why the Internet Engineering Task Force, whose mission is to make the internet work better, came up with a more efficient IPv6 address.
“IPv6 space is developed to accommodate over 340 trillion addresses. The idea behind this huge capacity is to ensure that even if the demand for IP addresses doubled every year, IPv6 will not be exhausted in 96 years.
“As a regulator that is committed to keeping pace with all technological developments, the commission is open to attracting all the benefits of these technologies and services.
“It is part of our regulatory concept of technology neutrality in our regulatory processes.”
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the two-day Digital Sense Forum Series 2015, which is being attended by more than 200 participants, ended on Friday.