In early May, President Cyril Ramaphosa released the latest outcomes from Operation Vulindlela, the vehicle for economic reform set up inside the public sector in 2020.
The changes are widespread across targeted industries with the goal of kickstarting the economy. They include water and electricity reforms, as well as crucial changes to the transport sector, among others.
For those of us operating in the technology sector, two of the outcomes discussed in the recent update are very encouraging. This is the much-anticipated spectrum auction, which was finally concluded in March of this year, an event that was over ten years in the making. And the implementation of the eVisa system.
Opening up the spectrum
We’ve discussed extensively the impact of what the spectrum auction would be on this site but are thrilled that it has finally become a reality. The goal of Operation Vulindlela is to generate inclusive economic growth. The release of spectrum is crucial to reducing the cost of data, increasing access to broadband and providing a higher quality of internet access across the country.
The impact of cheap access to the internet and all the opportunities it presents for small businesses and start-ups cannot be underestimated. This is more crucial than ever with many small businesses having suffered throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
Putting eVisas in place
As part of the operation, the public sector has extended eVisas to 14 countries, among whom are some of South Africa’s biggest tourism feeders. Again, the impact of digitising the visa process for crucial markets opens great opportunities for job creation and economic growth within our tourism sector.
But besides this, it simplifies the process of obtaining a work visa for those individuals with crucial skills that our country requires, thus also assisting with driving economic growth.
There was a lot of good news to come out of the recent update that will increase the opportunity for economic growth in our country, including changes to how we generate and sell electricity, and which are also set to help increase investor confidence in South Africa.
As our President noted, these changes need to be “fundamental and transformative” in order to reshape the way our economy operates.
As a small business that has survived the impacts of loadshedding, COVID-19, and lack of spectrum, we’re excited to see the power that these changes have to improve the lives of all South Africans.
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