According to a new report by the Collaboration on International ICT Policy for East and Southern Africa (CIPESA), Internet shutdowns in Sub-Saharan Afrika have cost approximately $237 million since 2015, This cost is calculated using a newly developed framework.
The report titled "Economic Impact of Internet Disruptions in Sub-Saharan Africa" estimates the cost of Internet shutdowns in 10 Afrikan countries since 2015.
The report calculates the losses which each country studied lost during the duration of Internet shutdown. It also reveals that:
The economic cost of an Internet disruption persist far beyond the days on which the disruption occurs because the disruption unsettle supply chains and have systemic effects, harming efficiency throughout the economy.
Internet disruptions, however short-lived, undermine economic growth, disrupt the delivery of critical services, erode business confidence, and raise a country’s risk profile.
Shutdowns have a high economic impact at micro and macro levels, adversely affecting the livelihoods of citizens, undermining the profitability of business enterprises, and reducing the GDP and competitiveness of countries that implement them.
Internet shutdowns, and in some cases disruption to social media services, have been witnessed during national exams as was the case in Ethiopia, during elections in countries such as Chad, Gabon, Gambia, Republic of Congo, and Uganda. Public protests have also led to internet disruptions in countries like Burundi, the Central African Republic, Cameroon, DR Congo, Ethiopia, Mali, Niger, and Togo.