As we moved to President Cyril Ramaphosa’s investment summit on the back of the jobs summit held last month, the department of telecommunications & postal services has been soliciting the views of information and communications technology (ICT) sector stakeholders on how the sector can contribute to a more positive investment environment, thereby stimulating much-needed economic growth and job creation in the context of the fourth industrial revolution. My first response to this challenge is that while there are sector-specific issues that affect national investment – and which I will flag below – if SA is to make any progress towards future-proofing the economy and its citizens, it has to move beyond understanding digitalisation as only a sectoral issue.

Rather, it should be seen as a policy challenge to all sectors: education, health, trade, finance, commerce, energy, transport — public and private — requiring high levels of state co-ordination to create an enabling environm...

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