Over $30 billion Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) that would have accrued to Nigeria through Microsoft Data Centres has been lost to South Africa.
This was disclosed at the weekend by Engr. Olusola Teniola, President of Association of Telecoms Companies of Nigeria (ATCON).
He listed poor power generating capacity; harsh business climate; foreign exchange volatility and high level corruption as key factors redirecting Nigerian bond foreign direct investments (FDIs) in Information and Communications Technology (ICT) to South Africa.
He emphasised that the listed facilities are better provided in South Africa than Nigeria, even though Nigerian remains the major African market to beat that of South Africa.
Citing examples with the redirection of two data centres by Microsoft to two South African cities of Johannesburg and Cape Town, at the expense of Nigeria, he said the loss in the diversion was worth about $30 billion.
His view was corroborated by the Senior Programme Manager, Microsoft Azure’s Blockchain-as-a-Service, Michael Glaros, at a forum in Lagos, when he revealed that his group spent about $15 billion on each of its data centre infrastructure across the globe.
According to Microsoft, “Expanding on existing investments, Microsoft will deliver cloud services, including Microsoft Azure, Office 365, and Dynamics 365, from Data centres located in Johannesburg and Cape Town, South Africa with initial availability anticipated in 2018.”
This is as the Executive Vice President, Cloud and Enterprise Group, Microsoft Corp, Scott Guthrie, said the firm was excited about the growing demand for cloud services in Africa and their ability to be a catalyst for new economic opportunities.
He said “With cloud services ranging from intelligent collaboration to predictive analytics, the Microsoft Cloud delivered from Africa will enable developers to build new and innovative apps, customers to transform their businesses, and governments to better serve the needs of their citizens.”