Addressing around 50 African Heads of State and Government during the opening plenary session at the summit, President Bio said that as Africans, the continent had missed out on the first, second and third industrial revolutions. He went on to state that Africans should not miss out on the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR).
“If we do not prepare our children for the 4IR technologies then we are going to miss out,” President Bio informed his audience, adding that the next generation should be familiar with Artificial Intelligence (AI) Internet, Robotics, and Virtual Reality as well as being familiar with machine learning and big data algorithms.
As part of preparing for the 4IR, President Bio informed his audience that his government has prioritized investment in human capital development through a record budgetary allocation to education. His call for investment to prepare Africans for the 4IR was therefore strategically aligned to the theme for this year’s TICAD7, which focuses on advancing Africa’s development through people, technology and innovation.
President Bio said, for him, the 4IR is about more than just technology-driven change. He added that it is an opportunity to help everyone, including leaders, policy-makers and people from all income groups and nations, to harness converging technologies in order to create an inclusive, human-centered future.
President Bio used the occasion to further inform his audience that his administration is doing a lot of reforms to make the investment business climate more favorable in Sierra Leone.
He maintained that his administration has doubled the number of businesses registered in one year. “We have seen an upward trend in starting a business indicator and protecting minority investors,” President Bio informed his audience.