Rural mobile connectivity is still poor in Africa, according to the GSMA Mobile Economy Africa 2016 Report. Mobile connectivity can help smallholders get access to relevant market information and financial services, which are essential for their development. Affordability is another key issue, as the report states that in countries such as Chad and Niger, for example, "mobile broadband represents around 200% of the annual income of the bottom 20% of the population." Nevertheless, mobile financial services are hugely important in sub-saharan Africa, with the region representing 63% of active mobile money accounts globally. Finally, the report encourages governments and mobile operators to expand the reach of mobile connectivity to include rural populations and smallholders, to help achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal "Zero Hunger" through the access to health and crop information.
Photo credits: GSMA