Digitalisation is providing Africa with as opportunity to accelerate growth and rapidly expand struggling economies – but it’s a small window and decision-makers must get a strategy in place now in order to succeed.
Siemens, in conjunction with Frost & Sullivan, have put together a comprehensive research project outlining the current state of key industries across the continent and identifying challenges and opportunities.
The study, called The Dawn of Digitalisation and its Impact on Africa, considers growth predictions and where the adoption of smart technology would be most beneficial in expanding industries to drive sustainable growth. For the purpose of this study, focus was placed on four key sectors: water, manufacturing and mining and minerals among others.
The urban population in Africa is expected to grow to 56% in 2050, from 35% in 2010. This rapid urbanisation will require robust infrastructure to ensure these expanding cities are hubs of growth and commerce, and not still trying to catch up with basic necessities.
According to Ralf Leinen, senior vice president digital industries for Southern and Eastern Africa, “For the first time in history we have an incredible opportunity to use smart technology to transform entire economies at an unprecedented rate. Africa needs to get efficient strategies in place now in order to succeed.”
In the wake of changing business dynamics, rapidly evolving technology and increasing competition, collaborative efforts between governments, industry, businesses (local and international), labour and academia is vital for creating an environment that is conducive to developing sustainability of local businesses, encourages technology upskilling, innovation, knowledge sharing and execution.