Government Ramps up Funding for Innovation in South Africa

Media Advisory

To all media

22 September 2022

The Minister of Higher Education, Science and Innovation, Dr Blade Nzimande will address the opening plenary of the 15th South African Innovation Summit (SAIS), which opens in Cape Town, on Tuesday, 27 September.

Achievements of the Innovation Fund of the Department of Science and Innovation (DSI) will top the agenda at the SAIS themed “Innovation goes viral”, as the Summit explores how the positive impact of great innovations can be multiplied, scaled and go viral.

The DSI has partnered with the 2022 Summit as a platform to raise awareness about the Department’s Innovation Fund and showcase its preliminary successes. Since establishment in the 2020/21 FY, the Fund has disbursed a total of R469 483 500.00, benefiting a total of 70.2% businesses, some of which are black-led/owned and 49.5% of those owned by black-owned women.

The Innovation Fund is a public-private national funding instrument focusing on supporting tech innovation and commercialisation in high-risk tech development initiatives, including investment in technology-based South African firms.

The Minister said the DSI developed the fund to support innovation by business in South Africa, and a crucial funding instrument of its agency, the Technology Innovation Agency (TIA) as a springboard to access further funding by innovators in South Africa.

The Minister said while innovation was not the only factor in faster economic growth, industrialisation and inclusive development, remained a significant and vital catalyst. 

“However, in South Africa, there is a need to view innovation through the prism of the triple challenge of poverty, inequality and unemployment,” said the Minister, adding that it was necessary to plan interventions aimed at significantly upscaling the impact of innovation to improve the quality of life of all citizens.

The summit will feature interactive panel discussions with over 55 inventors exhibiting, including 10 selected from the Innovation Fund and will focus on creating toolkits, networks and ecosystems streams that support the impact of great new ideas.

Members of the media are invited to attend the summit:

Date:      27 September 2022

Time:      09:00 – 12:00

Venue:   The Old Biscuit Mill, Woodstock, Cape Town

Link:      

To RSVP and for media enquiries, contact Veronica Mohapeloa at 083 400 5750, Thabang Setlhare at 072 659 9690

Issued by the Ministry of Higher Education, Science and Innovation

Building 53, CSIR Campus

Meiring Naudé Road

Brummeria

Pretoria

Enquiries: Ishmael Mnisi at 066 037 8859 or ishmael.mnisi@dst.gov.za

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