SA getting its ducks in a row for Fourth Industrial Revolution

Friday, January 25, 2019

Communications Minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams is hopeful that the ideas shared at the World Economic Forum (WEF) will empower South African industries to move at an enhanced speed towards the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

The theme for WEF 2019, which concludes today, is ‘Globalization 4.0: Shaping a Global Architecture in the Age of the Fourth Industrial Revolution’.

Ndabeni-Abrahams said the theme is in line with the global vision which seeks to redefine major transformations and manage the new technologies that have been spurred on by the Fourth Industrial Revolution, as well as the shift in global economic leadership.

“The scale and force will alter our systems of production, distribution, consumption and possibly the very essence of the evolution of our socio-economic policies, as outlined in the country’s National Development Plan,” the Minister said at a gathering of Team SA at the WEF.

President Cyril Ramaphosa shared the same sentiments when he participated in the global meeting .

The President said that there was an opportunity to harness the power of innovation to transform the South African economy in the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

“Given the country’s medium level of economic sophistication and diversification, there is wide scope for adapting foreign technologies and turning private R&D into a more powerful driver of corporate profitability and economic growth.

“We are implementing reforms to increase investment in mobile and fixed broadband infrastructure, through strengthening competition among internet service providers, and improving the quality and reducing the price of ICT services.”

Fourth Industrial Revolution brings about disruptions to digital technology across industries. This will bring new scope in all economic sectors such as the job market of the future, skills development and education of the workplace.

It will also give countries a unique opportunity to address youth unemployment by adapting the education models to catalyse innovation and upskill youth for digital transformation.

On the economic front, Ndabeni-Abrahams said under the leadership of President Ramaphosa, South Africa is a beacon of optimism promoting more inclusive transformation.

“Determined to herald a new dawn, the country is succeeding in building trust amongst the international community for the reform programme it knows is necessary to place South Africa’s story back on track.”

The Minister said government also remains cognisant of the work that lies ahead to ensure that South Africa remains an attractive investment destination and competitive nation. -