Minister in the Presidency Jeff Radede. File picture: Siyabulela Duda

Durban - Minister in the Presidency Jeff Radebe said unlocking trade opportunities between countries on the African continent is key to growth. 

Radebe arrived looking relaxed as vuvuzelas welcomed WEF delegates to the ICC in Durban this morning. 

"If we want to negotiate economic integration, we need to look at the continent as a whole. This includes infrastructure such as roads, rail, air and ports. 

"We need to support intra-African trade to unlock opportunities," he said. 

And with WEF highlights looking at inclusive economic growth and the fourth industrial revolution, Radebe said skills development for SA's youth is crucial.

"To take advantage of the 4th industrial revolution we need our youth to focus on science, technology, engineering and mathematics," he said.

The WEF conference has attracted business leaders from across the globe to Durban this week and education and unemployment have been identified as major challenges. 

Yesterday President Jacob Zuma said new and innovative ways of thinking are needed to develop the region to avoid Africa being left behind.

The fourth industrial revolution has been identified as building on the massive tech and digital revolution which requires constant reskilling.