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Lagging ICT adoption in SA reflects social and economic inequalities

Type of Resource:
Policy brief

Year of Publication:

- Challenges
- Solutions or Strategies
- Trends

- Digital Literacy And Skills
- Internet Access, Affordability And Use

Author(s): ResearchICTAfrica

Trends: Although South Africa has far more Internet users than other African countries, half of the population is still offline. Challenges: The lack of Internet-enabled devices and digital literacy, both of which are associated with poverty, are the main barriers to getting online. Mobile phone penetration among owners of informal and/or small businesses is very high (93%), yet less than a fifth of them use of mobile phones for business processes and management. A perceived lack of need for the Internet as well as it being unaffordable are the main inhibitors of internet use among small and informal businesses. Solutions: The sector can be unleashed by creating and enabling environment for investment, improved economies of scale and scope, by excise duties on equipment and devices for low income users and communities, removing unproductive regulatory transaction costs, secondary taxes and creating fair competitive environment.


Region of Study:

Country of Study:
South Africa,

Study Quality