In August 2013, President Jacob Zuma undertook a State Visit to Malaysia. He was introduced to the Big Fast Results Methodology through which the Malaysian government achieved significant government and economic transformation within a very short time. Using this approach, they addressed national key priority areas such as poverty, crime and unemployment.
With the support of the Malaysian government, the Big Fast Results approach was adapted to the South African context. To highlight the urgency of delivery the approach was renamed to Operation Phakisa (“phakisa” meaning “hurry up” in Sesotho).
Operation Phakisa is a results-driven approach, involving setting clear plans and targets, on-going monitoring of progress and making these results public.
The methodology consists of eight sequential steps. It focusses on bringing key stakeholders from the public and private sectors, academia as well as civil society organisations together to collaborate in:
- detailed problem analysis;
- priority setting;
- intervention planning; and
These collaboration sessions are called laboratories (labs). The results of the labs are detailed (3 foot) plans with ambitious targets as well as public commitment on the implementation of the plans by all stakeholders.
The implementation of the plans are rigorously monitored and reported on. Implementation challenges are actively managed for effective and efficient resolution.
Operation Phakisa are initially implemented in two sectors, the ocean economy and health.
Oceans Economy Lab
The Oceans Economy Lab, under the leadership of the Department of Environmental Affairs, has already been completed. It began on 8 July 2014 in Durban and concluded on 15 August 2014.
Over 180 delegates from national and provincial government departments, the private sector, civil society, labour and academia participated in the oceans Lab.
The focus of this Lab was on unlocking the economic potential of South Africa’s oceans.
With South Africa being bordered by the ocean on three sides, long term developmental programmes must include the coast and ocean resources and not land resources only.
To unlock the ocean economy, four priority areas were identified. These are marine transport and manufacturing activities, such as coastal shipping, trans-shipment, boat building, repair and refurbishment; offshore oil and gas exploration; aquaculture and marine protection services and ocean governance.
In 2010 the ocean contributed approximately R54 billion to South Africa’s GDP and accounted for approximately 316,000 jobs. The ocean has the potential to contribute up to R177 billion to GDP and between 800 and 1 million direct jobs.
These growth levers reflect at least 4 per cent annual growth in both GDP contribution and job creation.
Four focus areas have been selected as new growth areas in the ocean economy, with the objective of growing them and deriving value for the country.
- Marine transport and manufacturing activities, such as coastal shipping, trans-shipment, boat building, repair and refurbishment;
- Offshore oil and gas exploration;
- Aquaculture and
- Marine protection services and ocean governance.
The objective of inclusive economic growth permeates all four focus areas.