President Cyril Ramaphosa. File photo: ANA

President Cyril Ramaphosa may have found a solution for world leaders tired of travelling to unfriendly provinces or dull conferences. Send your hologram.

The South African leader spoke Friday at a Digital Economy Summit audience in Midrand, Johannesburg. Meantime, his holographic likeness delivered his remarks from a lectern at the Rustenburg Civic Centre, about 128km northwest of the city.

The president’s office said in a statement that the first-of-its-kind presentation showcases “the advancements in technology and immense opportunities of the digital economy.’’

Now, if only holograms could shake hands on the campaign trail.

4TH INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION 

Earlier on Friday, Gauteng premier David Makhura said Friday South Africa must take the lead on the continent in advancing technological innovations relating to the fourth industrial revolution.

The fourth industrial revolution is the current global trend in which technologies and trends such as the Internet of Things, robotics, virtual reality and artificial intelligence are changing the way people live and work.

"South Africa must take a lead in order to ensure that we collectively harness the opportunities and navigate the challenges brought about by the advent of 4th Industrial Revolution. Africa cannot be left behind. We cannot be left out," Makhura told the 4th Industrial Revolution SA (4IRSA) digital economy summit being hosted by an alliance from the public and private sectors, academia and civil society.

"We in South Africa are also moving fast to a future in which 41 percent of current jobs in South Africa will be rendered obsolete by automation; when 35 percent of skills that are considered important in today's workforce will have changed beyond recognition and others would have disappeared completely."

The 4IRSA partnership seeks to develop an inclusive, coherent, national response to the fourth industrial revolution for South Africa based on research and to complement and support other national activities relating to this.

ANA, BLOOMBERG