Impact of Technological Advancement on South Africa’s Economy

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By Charity Ukoha

The impact of technology on human life and activities can never be over-emphasized. It encompasses everything from the use of primitive tools for hunting in ancient history to the cutting-edge smartphones we have today; technology is as old as civilization itself. In today’s context, technology usually refers to advancements in energy, manufacturing, and communication.

Technological advancements have accelerated in recent centuries and are more pronounced than ever in our 21st century.

An author, Sukant Ratnakar once said “our future success is directly proportional to our ability to understand, adopt and integrate new technology into our work.” So, to achieve true potential, there is a need for a country especially on African continents to be empowered with the necessary digital competencies. Africans need access to digital tools and technologies while operating within a regulatory environment that protects the safety and interest of the people.

Today, South Africa as a country enjoys a stable mixed economy that draws on its fertile agricultural lands, abundant mineral resources, highly evolved intellectual capital, and tourist attractions. Bordered by Namibia to the Northwest, Botswana, and Zimbabwe to the North, and, Mozambique and Swaziland to the Northeast and East, with over 60 million people, South Africa cannot achieve much without the presence of technological Advancement.

These technological advances could be electricity, semiconductor chips, quantum computing, elevators, the human Genome project, automobiles, the global positioning system, smartphones, the internet, robotics, printing, artificial intelligence, television, cloud computing, nanotechnology, social media, nuclear power, incandescent light bulb, self-driving cars, genetic engineering and many more. No nation will have all these and still lag behind in the 21st century.

With the advancement in Technology in South Africa, the economy has been made easier, better, and more exciting because they are never stand-alone. They give rise to new inspirations and innovation which leads to launching a new era whether in medicine, mobility, communications, agriculture, education, and many more

Technology has a more positive impact on humans or society as compared to negative. It has rewarded the South Africans by providing resources or tools that make their lives much easier. Following are some positive changes that technology has brought to South African society:

• Improved Communication Levels in businesses, legislative parliaments, government parastatals, educational sector: technological communication stands as the most important part of society; thoughts are built and transferred with the help of communication. It is the fastest, most efficient, and most effective medium through which instructions and information are passed in order to promote the economy of the country. With technological advancement in South Africa, virtual meetings are held, paperless systems and wireless networks have been introduced and this has led to fast delivery of jobs and profit maximization. This has helped in boosting the economy as well.

• Improved Education and learning process of South Africans: Technology advancement has provided supporting ideas and practices in the education and learning process in South Africa. It has also championed and helped in nurturing big ideas in education research and educational development. Unlike in the olden days, people can easily enhance their knowledge using the internet. Most of the data present on the internet are free of cost; and can be accessed anytime and anywhere.

• Mechanized Agriculture: Technology changes the working mechanism of farmers. This advancement has promoted the economy of South Africa as lots of machines and technical instruments were introduced in the agricultural area which has made farming in South Africa easier, more effective, automated for the rural farmer, and at the same time, yielding more profit.

• Easy to Access Information: Information on how to boost the economy, government revenues, businesses, and more are easily accessed with the help of technology, and South Africa has adopted them to enhance your knowledge, and skills, in order to boost the economy.

• Technological Advancement has improved productivity in the financial sphere of South Africa: Technology has the power to help level the economic playing field in South Africa, facilitating more and better access to money and access to jobs. In fact, technology-driven change is already underway in the country. 1Technology has impacted South African economic opportunity to a broader segment of the population by making it easier and more affordable for South Africans to access and send money. As internet and smartphone penetration in the country continues to increase, and card-based payments gain traction, fintech companies have emerged and responded to these trends by building digital solutions to give both merchants and consumers more control over their money.

• Creation of a Wider Economical Scope: Technological advancement has in one way or the other improved the scope of the South African economy as it makes sources of income more comfortable and convenient. Transforming businesses with digital solution has enhanced the scope because the digital world’s target audience is way higher than the regional. Increasing the scope means creating your space in the market to reach out to your customers, and that can be effectively done with the help of technological advancement.

• Provision of Better Customer Services in South Africa: It is said that the customers are the one who gets the maximum advantage of technological solutions as the advanced tools help the people in business to enhance their service. Nowadays, all the business people try to figure out what are the demands of the customers and what service can make them satisfied. Technological advancement has helped the South African business sector realize the things that can make their customers satisfied. The businessmen can understand the customers’ mindset effectively, which has helped them offer the customers what they are satisfied with.

• Higher Revenues: Technological advancement has increased the income of South Africa as a nation. Business people can use technological solutions to provide better service to the customer. The better service will lead to more customers, eventually leading to an increase in revenues.

• Smooth Business Operation via technology has also boosted the South African Economy: Streamlining the nation’s affairs with technological tools that have the ability to deal with the complexity of its operation can be the most significant advantage without a doubt. Digital solutions can neglect a specific person’s requirement to handle the tasks because of the latest software available that can automate things. Also, technological tools and techniques eliminate human errors and manual efforts.

Technological advancement has the ability to boost the economy no matter how complex it is. Digitalization is one of the trending technical solutions that can effectively handle business operations and automates many operational processes in the nation’s building and South Africa is not exceptional.

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