The Coega Development Corporation (CDC) has welcomed the speech delivered by the President of the Republic of South Africa, Honourable Jacob Zuma, at the State of the Nation Address (SONA).
The CDC is encouraged by governments renewed commitment in ensuring energy security as well as the diversification of energy. The Coega Industrial Development Zone (IDZ) has been identified as one of the two locations for the gas-to-power programme, a 1000 MW of the power facility, with an estimated budget of R25 billion.
Furthermore, the CDC welcomes government’s commitment to the overall Independent Power Producers Programme and the President’s remarks on the outstanding power purchase agreements for renewable energy.
The CDC, in its efforts to pursuing government industrial policy and Renewable Energy Programme, has aligned its own energy programmes with that of the government for growth and development. To this end the organisation is localising manufacturing of industrial components, which have become a priority and has also led to the establishment of manufacturing companies in the Coega IDZ, such as DCD Wind Towers, Elactrawinds and the creation of the lay down area for the storage of abnormal cargo such as wind turbines and other manufacturing components.
The CDC as an industry leader welcomes government’s commitment on the “the new regulations making it compulsory for big contractors to subcontract 30 percent of business to black owned enterprises”. The CDC, as early as 2014 took a decision to award 35% of all procurement spent to SMME’s as part of the organisations policy. In the Financial Year 2015/16, the CDC exceeded its target by 2% and achieved a 37.2% SMME procurement spend. In addition, the CDC has implemented the SMME Development Programme, which is aimed at promoting small business, especially the black industrialists in support of government policy.
The CDC welcomes the commitment by government to “continue to prioritise women’s access to economic opportunities and, in particular, to business financing and credit.”
As part of CDC’s efforts to promote gender equality and women empowerment, the CDC appointed females at top management and board level. The organisation has thus embarked on an exclusive and focused Women Leadership Advancement Programme (WLAP), which is a developmental and coaching programme whereby 20 women leaders at CDC occupy management positions.
The CDC welcomes government’s exploration of an accelerated approach towards an “integration agenda through the implementation of SADC-COMESA-East African Community Free Trade Area.”
The Coega IDZ, as a Foreign Direct Investment destination of choice in Africa, is excited by the ample opportunities that could emanate from the SEZ incentives and the integrated approach to investment promotion, especially the establishment of Invest SA.
The population of investors in the Coega IDZ have established procurement and distribution lines to integrate with SADC-COMESA economies as well as other markets. We are seeing growing number of domestic and foreign investors who are looking for a gateway into SADC-COMESA. The envisaged Free Trade Area will add to enhance our value proposition to these investors. The Coega IDZ is a prime investment destination with over 36 operational investors consisting of both global and domestic investors, contributing in excess of R6.4 billion to the Nelson Mandela Bay’s economy.
Furthermore, as a key strategic partner to South Africa, the CDC’s ‘look East Strategy’ on investment promotion has yielded significant results with two Fortune 500 companies – FAW & BAIC International, investing jointly a total amount of approximately R11.6 billion in the Coega IDZ.
Poverty, inequality and unemployment remain the focus areas as enshrined in the National Development Plan (NDP), therefore in an effort to eradicate these challenges; the organisation continues to prioritise the employment of local labour on a ratio of 80%-20%, in both urban and rural areas across our country.