Pandor wants innovation in IT

2011-08-18 18:01
Cape Town - Internet Technology development remains important to South Africa, but the country is not yet on the frontier of innovation, Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor said.

"That does not mean that South Africa is reaping 'first-mover' dividends from R&D [research and development]. In fact, quite the contrary. Most of the IT R&D spend is for second-hand innovation. We are not on the frontier of IT innovation. We import technologies from abroad and adapt them for local use," Pandor told News24.

She was speaking at the IT Infrastructure Summit in Cape Town where delegates discussed how IT infrastructure could benefit public and private enterprises.

South Africa's broadband infrastructure is one of the keys to develop the economy and Pandor said that all universities and research institutions would soon have access to broadband.

Tax credits

"SANReN [South African National Research Network] is a high-speed network that enables and supports scientific and technological research. SANReN will quite soon provide broadband access to all universities, science councils, national research facilities.

"SANReN Phase I commenced in 2007 and, when complete, will connect at least 60 university campuses and research institutions across the country at very high speeds."

The minister hinted that she was intent on increasing tax credits to companies that engaged in technology innovation, similar to other countries, notably Australia.

"In Canada it's a $4.5bn a year tax credit and it's tweaked and expanded each year - not without controversy. In Australia it's even bigger.

"In South Africa it's only a R200m a year tax credit. We are working on improving the credit and Treasury is working on improving it in tandem with a new venture capital regime - announced in the budget this year.

"We can do more to encourage start-ups and it's in the IT and high tech sector that we see most of these developing," Pandor said.

One of the major technology projects in SA at the moment is the bid to host the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) telescope in the Northern Cape province.

Seven telescopes have already been built as an engineering test bed near Carnarvon and the next phase is the building of the MeerKAT, which will consist of 64 instruments.

The SKA will consist of over 3 000 linked radio telescopes and is a key driver of innovation and human capital development, said SA SKA project director Dr Bernie Fanaroff.

"One of the exciting things about the Square Kilometre Array is that it pushes the boundaries of technology and as such, it raises a lot of challenges which are very relevant to the ICT [internet, communications and technology] industry in the next two, three decades.

"By working on the Square Kilometre Array and on the MeerKAT as we're doing now, we're developing a group of young people who have skills and capabilities - not just in current technology - but in the next-generation technology," he said.


- Follow Duncan on Twitter
 
Read more on:    naledi pandor  |  ska  |  technology
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
22 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/Sport

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

ONE DAY ONLY – 50% off 1000’s of toys

Get 50% of 1000’s off toys! Offer valid on selected toys. Shop now! T&C’s apply

Pre-order your iPhone 6 at kalahari.com

Hurry and pre-order your own iPhone 6 now at SA’s favourite online store!

Bargain box – 60% off

Reduced prices, very limited stock. While stocks last. Hurry and shop now!

Mind blow low prices on electronics

Get either the Prestigio multiphone or Proline tablet 7” tablet for only R699. Offers valid while stocks last. Shop now!

30% off Barbie toys

Save 30% on all Barbie toys and accessories. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Mind power dominates and can help you to uncover things from a deeper level, but it can also create entanglements if you let your...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.