Minister of Communications Roy Padayachie has held out a hand of collaboration and partnership to the ICT industry, aimed at bringing all stakeholders together to develop the industry, improve skills and create high-level jobs.
At a round table discussion yesterday with industry leaders, the Minister shared a vision with industry representatives to build the "high road" that will see the industry worth R250-billion by 2020 – up from R187-billion today.
Padayachie commits to restructuring the Department to work faster, harder and smarter. He says an institutional review process will be completed within six months and all available vacancies will be filled in that time.
He points out that the migration to digital television creates the opportunity for upskills and job creation in both the manufacture and installation of set-top boxes.
An important objective for the Department is the provision of broadband access for all South Africans, and it has committed to discharging its outstanding universal obligations by the end of this year.
An E-skills Institute as well as an International Advisory Council lon the Information Society and Knowledge will aim to increase skills development and pull together interested parties.
In addition, a Naqtional Cybersecurity Policy has been developed to strengthen and ensure a secure and growing e-commerce environment.
To achieve its objective the Department has put together a draft proposal of how ICT can contribute to job creation.
In addition, it has committed to creating a partnership with the private sector as as essential step in theis process.
"Our country needs a robust ICT industry to make a meaningful contribution to government's pursuit of a growing economy that stands ready to respond to the needs of our people," says Padayachie.
"We seek through this partnership to achieve the following strategic objectives: universal access and connectivity in rural areas; and using technology to meet the needs of our people.
"We have an amazing opportunity before us. Working together and by joining hands, we can become the change we want to see."