Posted: September 17, 2021
A group of creative innovators will get an opportunity to showcase their inventions when they participate in the South African Innovation Summit (SAIS) that will take place in Cape Town from 21-23 September 2021. The innovators’ participation has been made possible by the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (the dtic) with the aim of exposing their creative talent and capability on the international stage. The theme of the 2021 edition of the SAIS will be Expanding Horizons.
the dtic-supported contingent of participations will comprise of ten grassroots innovators, 10 beneficiaries of the dtic’s innovation programmes, namely the Technology and Human Resources for Industry Programme (THRIP), and the Support Programme for Industrial Innovation (SPII), as well as seven Black Industrialists who have also benefitted from the dtic’s Black Industrialists Scheme.
According to the Deputy Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition, Mr Fikile Majola, who will deliver the keynote address at the summit, the South African Innovation Summit is an annual flagship event in the South African Innovation Calendar. It aims to catalyse economic growth on the African continent by connecting tech entrepreneurs in all stages, from incubation, throughout the entrepreneurial lifecycle to access capital, skills and markets.
“The Summit brings together innovation leaders from different countries, backgrounds, disciplines and worldviews to create an innovative environment that will add value on the South African economy and have a positive effect on entrepreneurs’ competitive edge. It is a platform for nurturing, developing and showcasing African innovation, as well as facilitating innovation thought-leadership,” says Majola.
He adds that the SAIS serves as a multi-stakeholder platform for dialogue and mobilisation of partnerships to address challenges related to the commercialisation of innovations.
“As a department we believe that the promotion of innovation has a potential to amplify South Africa’s competitive edge and inspire sustained economic growth across the African Continent,” stresses Majola.
The 2020 edition of the summit was entirely virtually due to the Covid-19 pandemic, but in 2019, more than 3 500 people, including 160 international delegates from more than 30 countries attended different SAIS platforms. These include the match and invest; pitching den; hackathon, the inventors garage; practical workshops, panel discussions; and plenary sessions. This year’s summit will be taking a hybrid format – combining the physical with digital, with the physical component being held at the Mount Nelson Hotel in Cape Town.
“The summit continues to be a platform through which the dtic can inform, educate, source inputs for policy development, engage and draw the pipeline for its programmes and incentives. Our participation in the summit will go a long way in assisting us obtain an industry insight on stakeholder perspective regarding areas where government’s intervention in shaping the South African innovation system has been successful, and on which areas to improve going forwards,” says Majola.
Bongani Lukhele – Director: Media Relations
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Issued by: The Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (the dtic)
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