Africa in the sights of Industry 4.0

The spotlight for Industry 4.0 will turn to Africa at this year’s World Economic Forum on Africa, which will be held in Cape Town, South Africa, from September 4-6.

Structured under the theme “Shaping Inclusive Growth and Shared Futures in the Fourth Industrial Revolution”, the summit will grapple with the increasing development rate of sub-Saharan Africa, as it is the first World Economic Forum summit to be held in sub-Saharan Africa since 2017.

In 2018, economic growth sat at 3.1 per cent, however in 2019 growth is expected to pick up to an average of 3.6 per cent across the region.

As Industry 4.0 spreads from the Global North to other points in the supply chain spread across the developing and emerging economies of the world, the summit will ask how can high-quality employment opportunities be created in the Industry 4.0 operating environment and how will workers be protected from the disruptions that industries will face.

Delegates will also explore the potential for emerging technologies to be applies in the fields of healthcare and disease prevention.

In addition, how industrialisation can be delivered off the back of economic growth will be an area of concern. Addressing this will remaining aware of environment impacts and challenges that comes from growth and industrialisation is a concern of the Forum.

According to Elsie Kanza, head of the Regional Agenda, Africa, and member of the executive committee at the World Economic Forum, there is great potential in the development of Africa, in the coming years.

“Africa’s successful development depends on building the right conditions for its new generation of entrepreneurs, innovators and leaders. This means smart, agile institutions; an enabling environment for innovation that includes access to skills and capital; and a determined approach by policy-makers to level the playing field and implement policies that prioritise sustainable, inclusive growth over short-term imperatives,” said Kanza.