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News Brief: Mobility Schemes, Talent Partnerships and Investment

13 October 2021

The hybrid event Tech Talent - Nigeria's New Oil? held on 15 September gathered Nigerian public and private stakeholders to discuss ways to maximise the potential of Nigerian tech talents and the Nigerian ICT environment. 

Digital Explorers, a pilot project funded by the EU that brought Nigerian ICT talents to Lithuania for a career advancement programme, shared their story of how a mobility scheme can create positive impacts not only to the talents themselves, but also to the Nigerian ICT environment by attracting investment to Nigeria. Telesoftas, an ICT company that hired Nigerian Data Scientists and developers through the Digital Explorers programme, is opening a new office in Abuja, which demonstrates the potential of mobility schemes to trigger foreign investment in the country of origin.

The event was also an occasion to highlight the potential benefits of proposed Talent Partnerships – a framework for legal migration between the EU and partner countries that couples labour mobility with investments in skills for the benefit of the country of origin.  Although still being explored, the long-term added value of such mobility schemes are likely to go beyond numbers, as shown by the Digital Explorers project, where new relationships have made an environment conducive to foreign direct investment. Despite being a pilot project, Digital Explorers contributed to a win-win-win model where Nigerian talents - both domestic and international - gain access to more opportunities; EU companies expand their businesses in the largest IT community in the African continent; and the Nigerian ICT ecosystem and economy benefits from more investment.