Ursula hints of robust data centre, cloud framework


…as final piece of digital economy jigsaw

By Mohammed AWAL

The Minister of Communications and Digitalisation, Ursula Owusu-Ekuful, has underscored the critical need for a robust regulatory framework for data centres and cloud services.

She said a strong regulatory framework has the potential to fuel innovation and economic growth, further cementing the country’s position as a leader in digitalisation, augmenting the economy’s global competitiveness and ability to attract international recognition and collaboration.

“The establishment of a comprehensive data centre regulatory framework in Ghana promises to yield a multitude of advantages for our nation. One of the primary benefits is the substantial contribution to economic growth,” Mrs. Owusu-Ekuful said.

She said this during a two-day stakeholder workshop in Accra to review a draft Data Centres and Cloud Computing Services Regulatory Framework; and reiterated that a thriving data centre sector is essential to foster economic growth and innovation.

Vibrant and forward-thinking digital landscape

With data gradually becoming the oxygen that countries depend on to survive in the 4th Industrial Revolution, Ghana – over the past few years – has been accelerating efforts to digitise its economy.

The country is considered one of the leaders in the sub-region at the forefront of pushing the digital agenda and its legal framework, with the domestic regulatory environment touted as having most of the needed elements to support a vibrant and competitive digital economy.

“The industry’s growth becomes a catalyst for nurturing a dynamic environment conducive to the development of cutting-edge technologies and innovative applications. This will facilitate and encourage the entrepreneurial spirit within our nation, laying the groundwork for a vibrant and forward-thinking digital landscape,” she stated.

She said the framework, when finalised, will significantly improve service delivery across various essential sectors, ranging from healthcare, education to e-government initiatives.

“The reliability and efficiency of these services can be greatly enhanced through a well-regulated and structured data centre industry, ensuring that essential services reach citizens in a timely and an effective manner,” she said.

Digital hub of choice

The Chief Technical Officer at the National Information Technology Authority (NITA), Solomon Kofi Richardson, on his part, said the quest to position the country as a destination of choice when it comes to investment in sub-Saharan Africa is ever evident in the programmes being rolled-out “to protect the investment we attract; giving a level playing fields to service providers and comfort to consumers”.

He, however, acknowledged the need to enhance the domestic digital environment and its legal framework.

“The dynamism of the digital environment necessitates a forward-thinking and adaptive regulatory approach,” Mr. Richardson added.

The draft framework under review is crafted to comprehensively address key aspects crucial for the effective regulation of data centres in Ghana, the Director of Digital Infrastructure Skills Empowerment of Smart Africa – a partner to NITA, Thelma Efua Quaye, said.

“It encompasses licensing and operational requirements, data localisation, security, environmental sustainability and fair competition,” she told journalists on the side-lines of the workshop.

Leave a Reply