By Phiwa Sikhondze
The Minister of Economic Planning and Development, Dr Tambo Gina has revealed through the Recent Economic Performance Statement that the Information Communication and Technology (ICT) subsector in Eswatini is estimated to have grown by 17.3% in 2023.
The Minister also revealed that the ICT subsector is the main contributor to the growth in the tertiary sector, which comprises all services such as wholesale and retail, transport, financial services, tourism activities, government services, and other services.
He noted that the tertiary sector is estimated to have grown by 8.2 percent in 2023, and is projected to grow by 4.0 percent in 2024.
The strong performance of the ICT subsector is attributed to the continued infrastructural investment in the form of increased base stations aimed at increasing access to network coverage. The Statement also notes that the introduction of wireless ICT technology, fibre network, and the potential rollout of a 5G network is expected to boost the ICT subsector in 2024 and beyond.
“The ICT subsector plays a vital role in the economy, as it facilitates communication, information, and innovation across various sectors and industries. The subsector also supports the digital transformation and inclusion agenda of the country, which aims to enhance the efficiency, productivity, and competitiveness of the economy,” the statement notes. The Ministry discloses that the tertiary sector, mainly supported by ICT, transport and storage, professional services, and tourism activities subsectors, is the largest contributor to the economy, accounting for about 60 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP), followed by the secondary sector, which comprises of manufacturing, electricity and water supply, and construction activities, and the primary sector, which includes agriculture, mining, and forestry.