ATC Ghana has invested US$ 1.5 billion to support and deepen digital penetration across the country since its incorporation in 2011, its Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Yahaya Yunusu, has disclosed.
Internet or digital penetration rate in the country stood at 68.2 per cent of the total population at the start of 2023, according to datareportal.com. Ghana was also home to 6.60 million social media users in January 2023, equating to 19.5 per cent of the total population, added the portal with a total of 43.88 million cellular mobile connections being active during that period—a development made possible by ATC’s investments and partnership with regulators and other players in the telecommunication industry.
“That’s the kind of impact that we are making,” Mr. Yunusu said during the company’s maiden media engagement in Accra.
A subsidiary of American Tower Corporation, ATC Ghana also created some 12,896 jobs, of which 178 staff are direct employees and 12, 716 indirect since its establishment, he said.
Deepening digital inclusion
Mr. Yunusu said his outfit remains committed to investing in wireless connectivity infrastructure in the country with more than 4,200 telecommunication sites, to support the operations of mobile network operators (MNOs) and other wireless and broadcast service providers to deliver fast and world-class wireless connectivity to consumers and businesses in all corners of Ghana.
“That’s our ethos, that’s our reason for existing, which is to support the country’s effort to deepen digital inclusion everywhere,” he stated.
Touching on the company’s contribution to the country’s economy, Mr. Yunusu bemoaned that the industry is being over-taxed. He said the industry brings about 40 per cent of the country’s tax revenue, lamenting: “We feel we are heavily taxed”.
The total value of taxes, fees and levies paid by and collected by the telecommunications industry for the government rose significantly from GH¢3.6 billion in 2020 to GH¢4.3 billion in 2021.
This represents an increase of over 18 percent in the taxes paid by the industry, along with other payments made to the government and other statutory bodies, according to the Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications 2021 Total Tax Contribution Report.
The yearly report anonymises data collected from the members of the Chamber, namely AirtelTigo, MTN, Vodafone, ATC, Helios, Comsys, CSquared, Ericsson and Huawei.
Long term commitment
As a long-term strategic partner with an unwavering commitment to the telecommunication sector and the country, Mr. Yunus assured that ATC Ghana would continue to invest significantly to further develop and enhance wireless infrastructure solutions across the country.
This would be done through a partnership with the government and other players in the industry to enable the needed growth in line with the government’s digital expansion and inclusion agenda, he stated.
“Collaboration with all stakeholders is critical to the improvement of network connectivity and access through expansion of services and innovation to facilitate the digital transformation,” he stated.
The company last year was presented with four prestigious awards at the Ghana Information Technology and Telecom Awards (GITTA).
The awards include: the Telecom Infrastructure Provider of the Year, the Tower Team of the Year – ATC Ghana Management Team, the Tower CEO of the Year – Yahaya Nasamu Yunusa and the Top 20 Tech Leaders – Yahaya Nasamu Yunusa.