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Mobile is Driving Africa’s Digital Economy

This is one of the findings highlighted in the white paper titled: “Towards a flourishing digital economy for all – a spotlight on Africa”, produced by the UK’s Department for International Trade (DIT), in partnership with the GSM Association’s Mobile World Live team. Launched on the sidelines of Mobile World Congress 2022, the research explores the progress made in building Africa’s mobile-driven digital economy. It also considers specific obstacles in the African mobile commerce market, including unbanked customers, the lack of reliable identity credentials and last mile delivery issues. On the issue of challenges in advancing mobile commerce on the continent, the report notes digital infrastructure and the issue of identity among the most notable obstacles. It states that a thriving digital economy requires a strong base of connectivity, customer identity and last mile delivery. Short explained that 58% of Africa’s population is covered by 4G – it’s not yet a 5G world. In some rural areas, internet usage is as low as 26%. Furthermore, those with feature phones won’t get a suitable mobile commerce experience. The report highlights that for most Africans, the mobile internet is the internet. “E-commerce marketplace Jumia, which has 7.3 million active customers across Africa, says 75% of its customers use smartphones to shop on its platform.