Johannesburg – President Jacob Zuma will launch Operation Phakisa to unlock the country’s ocean economy, the presidency said on Sunday.

“We have constantly lamented that we have good plans, but the implementation part is a challenge,” Zuma said in a statement.

“We are now focusing intensively on implementation.

“Operation Phakisa is designed to answer that fundamental question: how do we turn our good plans into action to improve the lives of our people and to make the National Development Plan come alive?” he said.

Operation Phakisa is an adaptation of the Big Fast Results methodology that was successfully applied by the Malaysian government in the delivery of its economic and government transformation programmes.

Presidency spokesperson Mac Maharaj said the launch would be in Durban on Wednesday, focusing on unlocking growth and jobs in the country’s ocean economy.

South Africa was uniquely bordered by the ocean on three sides, east, south and west.

With the inclusion of Prince Edward and Marion Islands in the southern ocean, the coastline was 3 924km long.

This vast ocean space was relatively unexplored in terms of its economic potential.

In 2010, the ocean contributed around R54bn to South Africa’s gross domestic product and accounted for approximately 316 000 jobs.

An analysis was conducted of nine sectors that comprise South Africa’s ocean economy.

The ocean had a potential to contribute to the gross domestic product up to R177bn. It also had a potential contribution of between 800 and one million direct jobs.

The Operation Phakisa delivery methodology would also be used to improve delivery in the health sector, to improve the performance of clinics, and would also soon be used in the mining sector and basic education.