http://www.engineeringnews.co.za
  SEARCH
Login
R/€ = 13.04Change: -0.16
R/$ = 12.07Change: -0.10
Au 1204.60 $/ozChange: 1.40
Pt 1170.50 $/ozChange: 4.00
 
 
Note: Search is limited to the most recent 250 articles. Set date range to access earlier articles.
Where? With... When?








Start
 
End
 
 
And must exclude these words...
Close Main Search
Close Main Login
My Profile News Alerts Newsletters Logout Close Main Profile
 
Agriculture   Automotive   Chemicals   Competition Policy   Construction   Defence   Economy   Electricity   Energy   Environment   ICT   Metals   Mining   Science and Technology   Services   Trade   Transport & Logistics   Water  
What's On Press Office Tenders Suppliers Directory Research Jobs Announcements Letters Contact Us
 
 
 
RSS Feed
Article   Comments   Other News   Research   Magazine  
 
 
Jun 22, 2012

Opportunities, obstacles for small firms keen on entering Internet economy

Back
Africa|Boston Consulting Group|Consulting|Projects|Sustainable|Systems|Training|World Wide Worx MD Arthur Goldstuck|Africa|China|India|South Africa|Communication Technology|Equipment|Gross Domestic Product|Internet Access|Internet Economy|Internet Presence|Internet Research Company World|Manufacturing|Product|Services|Systems|Telecommunication Devices|Telecommunications|Andreas Lundmark|Infrastructure|Stella Ndebani|Broadband|Communication Technology
Africa|Consulting|Projects|Sustainable|Systems|Training||Africa||Equipment|Manufacturing|Services|Systems||Infrastructure||
africa-company|boston-consulting-group|consulting-company|projects|sustainable|systems-company|training|world-wide-worx-md-arthur-goldstuck|africa|china|india|south-africa|communication-technology-industry-term|equipment|gross-domestic-product|internet-access|internet-economy|internet-presence|internet-research-company-world|manufacturing|product|services|systems|telecommunication-devices|telecommunications|andreas-lundmark|infrastructure|stella-ndebani|broadband|communication-technology
© Reuse this



There is significant potential for South African small, medium-size and micro- enterprises (SMMEs) to harness the Internet to improve productivity and expand their markets. Coordinated efforts are needed, however, to drive Internet access across the country, information and communication technology (ICT) industry experts said at a recent conference on the commercial value of the Internet in South Africa.

The Internet can be a key driver of growth and this is particularly true for SMMEs, with additional socioeconomic benefits accruing owing to improved services and information available, said business advisory firm Boston Consulting Group principal Andreas Lundmark.

“It is important to provide access to the broad population, but the affordability of access and devices is a key driver,” he explained.

However, he emphasised that governments and companies should not build infrastructure in anticipation of an increasingly connected society, but that a parallel approach must be taken instead, which simultaneously considers the affordability of telecommunication devices and access to the Internet.

“India has focused on making devices affordable and, in this way, has boosted connected users, which can, in turn, stimulate its Internet economy. “Further, China and India have benefited from increasing connectivity, as China exports the equipment and devices used for telecommunications, while India has developed a vibrant outsourcing industry owing to the improved connectivity of its population,” highlighted Lundmark.

The Internet contributed R59-billion, or 2%, to South Africa’s gross domestic product in 2011, said Internet research company World Wide Worx MD Arthur Goldstuck.

Significantly, R29.2-billion was spent on Internet presence and access, compared with R13.5-billion spent on data infrastructure.

The Internet has had a significant impact on the emergence and sustainability of SMMEs and a proportional impact on economic growth and job creation, he highlighted.

Internet access can enable SMMEs to access sophisticated business tools, usually the preserve of large companies that can afford the systems, while the pay-as-you-grow nature of virtual and outsourced services, made possible by Internet access, improves the efficiency and productivity of SMMEs, says Lundmark.

Meanwhile, the value that users gain from Internet access in the G20 grouping of indus- trialised countries, which includes South Africa, is more than eight times the costs incurred to access the Internet.

“Internet access can increase an enterprise’s reach to draw customers, create a sustainable customer base for the company, ensure access to business tools and enable online trade and commerce.”

Government broadband projects are aimed at connecting cities and rural areas, and business and government need to promote eco- nomic growth by enabling users to take advantage of information, said Deputy Communications Minister Stella Ndebani.

“Online services and Internet access can help to unlock socio-economic development and can be a low-key driver of economic growth. Communications infrastructure forms part of a systematic approach to create an information society,” she said.

Uptake in especially rural areas remains slow, owing to costs and a lack of infrastructure, content and digital literacy, she added.

Gauteng’s ICT strategy is focused on increasing penetration of Internet access and digital skills-development opportunities, especially in the manufacturing space, said Gauteng member of the executive council for economic development Qedani Mahlangu.

This prompted the provincial government to convert the 2010 Smart City, developed for use during the Soccer World Cup, into an ICT training centre supported by universities in the province, she said.

“The biggest challenge we had identified was the lack of penetration. However, we must work with the private sector to enable an increased level of connectivity and ensure that government invests and participates in the important development of ICT infrastructure.”

Edited by: Martin Zhuwakinyu
© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Other Economy News
Information and communications technology (ICT) distributor DCC is making Windows- and Android-operating systems tablets available through retailers and education equipment suppliers to provide school children with affordable, high-performance education tools. The...
The South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s (Sacci’s) Business Confidence Index (BCI) decreased by 3.7 index points month-on-month to 89.1 in March.
As is well known, at the end of last month, retired General Muhammadu Buhari defeated incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan in Nigeria’s Presidential elections. A northerner and a Muslim, Buhari won a majority of the votes in predominantly Christian States in the...
More
 
 
Latest News
South African mining and energy adviser Ted Blom has raised a litany of concerns about the state of power utility Eskom and has warned of runaway costs and shortfalls in coal and water, as well as rail capacity. Blom was surprised by the recent buoyancy shown by...
JSE-listed Astrapak will sell specialised packaging systems manufacturer Knilam to Mapflex SA for R17.7-million. The proceeds would be used to reduce Astrapak’s current level of gearing.
The last of the 26 mooring units comprising the Port of Ngqura’s automated mooring system (AMS) have arrived at the port and are expected to improve port efficiency and safety, further driving the Transnet National Ports Authority’s (TNPA’s) objective of establishing...
More
 
 
Recent Research Reports
Steel 2015: A review of South Africa's steel sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Steel 2015 report provides an overview of the key developments in the global steel industry and particularly of South Africa’s steel sector over the past year, including details of production and consumption, as well as the country's primary carbon...
Projects in Progress 2015 - First Edition (PDF Report)
In fact, this edition of Creamer Media’s Projects in Progress 2015 supplement tracks developments taking place under the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme, which has had four bidding rounds. It appears to remain a shining light on the...
Electricity 2015: A review of South Africa's electricity sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Electricity 2015 report provides an overview of State-owned power utility Eskom and independent power producers, as well as electricity planning, transmission, distribution and the theft thereof, besides other issues.
Construction 2015: A review of South Africa’s construction sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Construction 2015 Report examines South Africa’s construction industry over the past 12 months. The report provides insight into the business environment; the key participants in the sector; local construction demand; geographic diversification;...
Liquid Fuels 2014 - A review of South Africa's Liquid Fuels sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Liquid Fuels 2014 Report examines these issues, focusing on the business environment, oil and gas exploration, the country’s feedstock supplies, the development of South Africa’s biofuels industry, fuel pricing, competition in the sector, the...
Water 2014: A review of South Africa's water sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Water 2014 report considers the aforementioned issues, not only in the South African context, but also in the African and global context, and examines the issues of water and sanitation, water quality and the demand for water, among others.
 
 
 
 
 
This Week's Magazine
Sappi Southern Africa CEO Alex Thiel
Forest products group Sappi has confirmed the selection of its 25 MW biomass-to-power project, to be erected at its Ngodwana mill, in Mpumalanga, as a preferred bidder under the South African government’s Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement...
Information and communications technology (ICT) distributor DCC is making Windows- and Android-operating systems tablets available through retailers and education equipment suppliers to provide school children with affordable, high-performance education tools. The...
Another cement manufacturer is set to enter the Ugandan market, raising hopes that prices will come down and spur growth in the construction industry. National Cement, a Kenyan manufacturer, has unveiled plans to invest $195-million in a new manufacturing plant in...
With growth rates exceeding that in the developed world – at an average of between 4% and 5% between 2002 and 2014 – African countries provide investors with ample reason to tap into booming consumer demand says Manufacturing Circle executive director Coenraad...
The South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s (Sacci’s) Business Confidence Index (BCI) decreased by 3.7 index points month-on-month to 89.1 in March.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alert Close
Embed Code Close
content
Research Reports Close
Research Reports are a product of the
Research Channel Africa. Reports can be bought individually or you can gain full access to all reports as part of a Research Channel Africa subscription.
Find Out More Buy Report
 
 
Close
Engineering News
Completely Re-Engineered
Experience it now. Click here
*website to launch in a few weeks
Subscribe Now for $96 Close
Subscribe Now for $96