President Cyril Ramaphosa has appointed members of a presidential commission on the fourth industrial revolution to recommend policies, strategies and plans to position SA as a competitive player in the digital space. Several studies have shown that the fourth industrial revolution — which involves a fusion of artificial intelligence (AI) and automated machines — has the potential to disrupt every industry. A 2017 McKinsey report projected that by 2030, at least a third of the activities of 60% of occupations could be automated. Another recent study by global consultancy firm Accenture found that close to 6-million jobs in SA would be at risk over the next seven years due to automation. The study highlighted that both blue- and white-collar jobs are at risk. These occupations include those of clerks, cashiers, bank tellers, construction workers, mining and maintenance staff. Ramaphosa will chair the 30-member commission, the presidency announced in a statement issued on Tue...

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