The resurgence of the Manufacturing Indaba is stirring much anticipation amidst the industrial community both far and wide. The 9th edition of the conference and exhibition will be returning to the physical event realm after adopting an exclusively virtual approach over the past 2 years.
The 2022 edition is to be hosted as a physical in-person event from the 21 – 22 June 2022 at the Sandton Convention Centre, Johannesburg, South Africa. Sandton is the economic powerhouse of South Africa and Africa’s leading business hub.
Reigniting economic growth through manufacturing
The Covid-19 pandemic has negatively impacted amongst others industry, value chains, trade, labour markets, foreign direct investment, and remittance flows. The outcomes of the pandemic have hindered the economy’s ability to increase real incomes in the long term, thereby creating a heavy debt burden. As the health crisis subsides, economic recovery has become a priority, and inclusive and sustainable industrialization is fundamental to building a better future.
Manufacturing plays an unequaled role in driving economic development, made evident by how industrial growth positively affects the overall GDP and productivity of a nation. A rise in manufacturing output induces production in the manufacturing sector as well as in other sectors through direct production linkages and indirect multiplier effects, hence driving the growth of the economy in its entirety. A resilient manufacturing sector paves the way for a nation to provide a quality standard of living for its citizens and has subsequently become acknowledged as a key accelerator for the continent’s robust and inclusive growth.
Further, manufacturing provides multifaceted productive advantages. First, mass production implies economies of scale: The more units produced, the lower the per-unit cost, and thereby increasing the value of outputs per input. Second, manufacturing is inclined to have strong linkages to other economic sectors, creating demand for skills, inputs, manufacturing components, transportation, and storage.
Therefore, the reignition of manufacturing boosts reignition across a wider range of activities, including those within the services sector. Third, most innovation and technological advances originate in the manufacturing realm, which then spill over into other industries, consequently enhancing their levels of productivity.
Capitalising on the continent’s resources and opportunities presented by significant shifts in the structure of global production ensures the implementation of domestic manufacturing and a commodity-based industrialization process. This provides immense opportunity for job creation and promotion of inclusive economic transformation across South Africa.
Harnessing Africa’s opportunities for industrialization involves adding value to domestic products, soft and hard commodities and developing forward and backward linkages to the regional and international value chains. Moreover, it remains essential to develop and expand SMEs, industry clusters and the establishment of private-public partnerships to leverage resources for financing the industrialization process.
Further, implementing the African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement (AfCFTA) can develop regional value chains and accelerate productive transformation if African entities can harness digital innovations to reduce production costs and leaders can create policies for skills development, public procurement, and foreign investment to further reinforce industrial linkages.
As a hallmark for conferences and events similar in nature, the Manufacturing Indaba empowers African manufacturing participants to enter a new age of innovation, technology, competitiveness, and sustainability. The upcoming in-person symposium is anticipated to make a long lasting and positive impact on manufacturing communities by enabling attendees to identify significant participants, speakers, financiers, influencers, and leaders, thereby giving them the means to not only survive, but thrive in this intensely competitive sector.
Attending this event affords participants with superior knowledge to develop advanced solutions and business models, as well as access to new markets, new clients and the opportunity to grow prosperous manufacturing businesses, ultimately contributing to the nation’s economic growth.