The WAIPA - OCO Global Innovation Report 2023 highlights the sectors that are expected to play a crucial role in the future. The survey conducted among 74 investment promotion agencies (IPAs) reveals that the energy sector is considered the most significant by 85% of the respondents. Digital follows closely behind at 81%, while health and manufacturing are both viewed as relevant by 45% of the participants.
The high ranking of the energy sector indicates its growing importance in the coming years. As the world faces challenges related to climate change and sustainable development, there is an increasing focus on clean and renewable sources of energy. Investment in energy infrastructure, such as solar, wind, and hydroelectric power, is expected to surge, creating opportunities for innovation and growth.
The digital sector's prominence aligns with the ongoing digital transformation across various industries. Advancements in technologies like artificial intelligence, blockchain, and the Internet of Things (IoT) are reshaping business operations and driving economic growth. IPAs recognize the potential for digital innovation to enhance productivity, efficiency, and competitiveness, leading to its high relevance in the future.
The health sector's position as a significant sector of the future highlights the increasing importance of health security. The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed vulnerabilities in healthcare systems worldwide, prompting a greater emphasis on healthcare infrastructure, research and development, and public health preparedness. Investment in areas such as telemedicine, biotechnology, and medical equipment is expected to grow to meet the evolving healthcare needs.
Manufacturing, although ranked lower in the survey, remains relevant as it undergoes a transformation. Traditional low-cost production is shifting to more advanced manufacturing processes, including automation, robotics, and additive manufacturing (3D printing). These technological advancements are aimed at improving productivity, reducing costs, and fostering innovation in manufacturing. IPAs recognize the value of such transformations and the potential for manufacturing to contribute to economic growth in the future.
Overall, the rankings provided by the IPAs in the report reflect the changing dynamics and priorities in the global economy. The energy and digital sectors are expected to play leading roles, driven by the need for sustainability and technological advancement. The health sector is gaining prominence due to an increased focus on healthcare security while manufacturing undergoes a transformation towards higher value-addition and innovation. These sectors present significant opportunities for investment, innovation, and economic growth in the future.