The number of mobile subscriptions in Nigeria climbed to 222.23 million in 2022 following the implementation of the Federal Government’s National Identification Number-Subscriber Identity Module program.
Over 72.77 million active telecommunications subscribers were prevented from making calls when the policy went into effect in April. However, the business has subsequently recovered and is expected to grow by 13.89% in 2022.
The overall number of subscriptions increased from 195.13 million in December 2021 to 222.23 million in December 2022, according to new data from the Nigerian Communications Commission. This growth represented a complete reversal of the decrease that afflicted the telecoms industry in 2021, when total mobile subscriptions fell by 4.42 percent from 204.15 million in December 2020 to 195.13 million in December 2021.
MTN Nigeria increased by 20.96% from 73.59 million to 89.02 million during the period under review; Airtel increased by 11.38% from 53.93 million to 60.07 million; Globacom increased by 9.98% from 54.82 million to 60.29 million; and 9mobile increased by 0.49 percent from 12.85 million to 12.79 million.
Teledensity, or the number of active telephone connections per 100 people residing in an area, increased to 116.60 percent in 2022. (highest on record).
Nigeria has the largest mobile population in Africa, and its youth population is likely to rise further. According to the GSMA, the global trade association for telecommunications companies, 18 million new Nigerians will become unique mobile users by 2025.
Also the Chief Operating Officer of the Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria, Ajibola Olude, attributed the increase in mobile subscriptions in 2022 to greater use of Internet of Things devices and an united government effort.
He said, “Many factors were responsible for the growth of the sector in 2022. IoT and robotics need SIMs to be able to work because they are Internet enabled.
“IoTs are the order of the day now. A lot of things are connected to the Internet, and they need SIMs. Asides from that, at the federal and state level, there is serious awareness on the need to adopt ICT. Many services have moved online, and don’t forget that the CBN is pursuing a cashless economy which means that there is a need to probably use an Internet-enabled phone