We are extremely proud of the tremendous strides South Africa has made over the past twenty-five years in the post-apartheid era. We have overcome many challenges through the enduring and innovative South African spirit. Now, we are facing a global phenomenon known as the Fourth Industrial Revolution, which brings about an immense set of challenges. But this revolution also offers boundless and exciting opportunities for the country. The establishment of the Presidential Commission on the Fourth Industrial Revolution is an affirmation of the Government’s commitment to addressing the aforementioned challenges while simultaneously seizing the opportunity to improve the lives of South Africans. This document sets out a vision for chartering the way forward for South Africa in the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Our vision is:
South Africa will have a globally competitive, inclusive and shared economy with the technological capability and production capacity that is driven by people harnessing the Fourth Industrial Revolution to propel the country forward towards its social and economic goals.
The Fourth Industrial Revolution offers prospects for South Africa to revolutionise energy, water, mining, manufacturing, agriculture, financial services, public administrations sectors, amongst others, in a way that will benefit all South Africans. This document formulates and critiques these prospects, and it is expected that 4IR strategic policies and programmes emerging from this document will create an inclusive economy to stimulate growth within the country.
Lastly, let us work together in creating a South African legacy within the realm of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Let us create a legacy that is characterized by the enduring and innovative South African spirit.
Prof. Tshilidzi Marwala (Vice-Chancellor and Principal, University of Johannesburg)
Deputy Chairperson: Presidential Commission on the Fourth Industrial Revolution