Month: January 2022
MTN Group President and Chief Executive Officer Ralph Mupita has paid a day’s working visit to Ghana to engage with some key stakeholders and reiterate MTN’s commitment to support the further development of the Ghanaian telecommunications sector and work towards greater financial inclusion.
On Wednesday, the Group CEO and his team of executives paid courtesy calls on the Bank of Ghana, the Ghana Revenue Authority, and the Ministry of Finance to interact and discuss issues of mutual interest, including localisation.
During the visit to the Bank of Ghana, Mr. Mupita expressed his appreciation for the Bank’s support over the years. Bank of Ghana Governor Dr. Ernest Addison congratulated MTN for the work done in the mobile financial services sector and indicated that the Bank was counting on MTN to continue to champion innovation and financial inclusion. Dr Addison was joined by the Second Deputy Governor Mrs Elsie Addo Awadzi.
The MTN delegation then called on the Commissioner General of the Ghana Revenue Authority Mr. Ammishaddai Owusu-Amoah and his deputies where Mr. Mupita commended Ghana for encouraging economic growth last year.
In his engagements with the Ministry for Finance, Mr. Mupita reiterated MTN Group’s continued support to the Government of Ghana in achieving its digital agenda.
This is the third visit of the Group CEO to Ghana since he assumed office in September 2020. He is accompanied by the MTN Group Senior Vice President of Markets Ebenezer Asante, MTN Ghana CEO Selorm Adadevoh, CEO of Mobile Money Ltd Eli Hini, MTN Ghana Chief Corporate Services Officer Sam Koranteng and MTN Ghana Chief Financial Officer Antoinette Kwofie.
The visit to Ghana is part of Mr. Mupita’s regular engagements with local authorities in priority markets. He calls on key stakeholders early every year to revisit the Group’s commitments, understand their expectations and foster cordial working relationships. His next stop is Nigeria.
This year’s UN International Day of Education is themed ‘Changing Course, Transforming Education’, which reiterates the importance of education and collectively building a progressive, sustainable space of learning.
Access to the internet and technology has the power to change lives and bridge inequalities. Over the past two years, the socio-economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has seen several lockdowns and has brought to the fore the heightened importance of connecting the unconnected. The COVID-19 pandemic saw the closures of learning spaces and schools, bringing the inequalities of the physical world to light. It highlighted the need to enable education by driving investments towards access to online educational platforms and learning tools.
As the world stands at a turning point, there’s an opportunity to make technology the foundation for sustainable learning solutions.
During the first year of the pandemic, by understanding the challenges that millions of learners now faced of not being able to attend school or access information, a number of MTN markets across the continent zero-rated websites to play their part in minimising the disruptions that COVID-19 lockdowns caused for learners. By partnering with governments and educational institutions MTN enabled the zero-rating of over 1500 educational websites resulting in more than 108.6TB of traffic through these sites.
Taking lessons from the pandemic, as a continent or even the world, remote learning and virtual engagements has become the norm of our everyday life. Adapting to this reality and mindful of the uncertainties of the future, MTN continues to focus on its intent to lead digital solutions for Africa’s progress. We understand that in harnessing technological change, we will realise the UN SDG goals to ensure that all learners acquire the knowledge and skills needed to promote sustainable development.
Across the continent, in support of transformation in learning, many of MTN’s markets developed viable solutions to addressing the access gaps, in attaining and accessing educational material. As an example, MTN South Africa launched online school in 2021. This platform developed in partnership with the South African Department of Education and the National Education Collaboration Trust, is loaded with learning resources and lessons, as well as additional tools for learners. By actively seeking solutions, working with partners, and leveraging our key competencies as a digital operator, MTN is able to offer adaptable solutions to meet the changing learning needs of our communities.
The landscape of education and skills development are rapidly transforming and being accelerated by the continued COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic has in many respects changed the world as we know it, but it too has given us the opportunity to understand the power of digital transformation and inclusion. Children and youth in villages or remote areas no longer need to be excluded from accessing world class digital material and virtual learning opportunities. Accessible, digital education means that anywhere, anytime learning can be made available for all.
MTN Group’s commitment to improve our environmental, social and governance (ESG) performance has led to a significant upgrade in the Group’s ESG rating by FTSE Russell, and the inclusion of MTN in the FTSE/JSE Responsible Investment Top 30 Index.
Noting an improvement across each of the ESG pillars, FTSE upgraded MTN’s overall rating to 4.3 at end-December 2021 from 2.9 previously. The ratings are scored out of 5.0. In the telecoms sector, MTN moved from the 34th percentile in December 2019 – the last time such a ranking was performed – to the 97th percentile in December 2021.
MTN Group received the maximum 5.0 points as a social score (compared to 3.2 previously), 4.5 points (from 4.0) as a governance score and 3.6 (from 1.9) as an environment score.
“We are encouraged by this re-rating, and as part of our Ambition 2025 strategy, we will continue with the work to create shared value, with ESG at the core,” said MTN Group President and Chief Executive Officer Ralph Mupita. “It reflects the step change we have taken in our approach to sustainability and improving the risk profile of the group.”
Compared to the mobile telecoms sub-sector, MTN scored the highest across all social categories – human rights & community; labour standards; social supply chain – as well as across both governance categories – corporate governance and anti-corruption. With regards environmental themes, the Group scored substantially higher than the sub-sector average for climate change and environmental supply chain.
“As a provider of essential communications services, we take very seriously the social and governance aspects of our work,” said Nompilo Morafo, who assumes the role of MTN Group Chief Sustainability and Corporate Affairs Officer on 1 February 2022. “MTN’s approach to human rights & community, labour standards and social supply chain all showed improvements, and these remain critically important. Similarly, our work around anti-corruption and sound corporate governance was recognised, and we look forward to more progress in 2022.”
MTN Group is now in FTSE/JSE Responsible Investment Top 30 Index, which identifies South African companies with leading ESG practices.