The Global System for Mobile Telecommunication Association has highlighted the adverse impact of taxation and duty levies on smartphone adoption in Nigeria and Sub-Saharan Africa.
According to GSMA’s report, taxes and duties contribute to 10 to 30 percent increase in smartphone costs, varying by country across Africa, hindering accessibility for many in the region.
In its ‘The Mobile Economy Sub-Saharan Africa (2023)’ report, GSMA pointed out that high manufacturing costs, especially in the 5G and 4G markets, pose challenges for manufacturers in SSA to produce affordable devices, limiting market share.
The report emphasised that smartphone affordability remains a significant barrier to mobile internet usage in the region, with approximately 60 percent of Africa’s population lacking mobile internet access despite coverage.
To address these challenges, the report highlighted collaborative efforts between operators and manufacturers, leading to a reduction in the average selling price of smartphones in recent years.
The influx of devices priced under $100, particularly from Chinese brands like Tecno, Itel, and Infinix, has played a crucial role in making smartphones more accessible.
Additionally, operators are increasingly partnering with manufacturers to manage costs and offer financing plans to customers, contributing to the ongoing efforts to enhance digital penetration in the region.
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