A national deal between Air Products and APM Terminals – both tenants of the Coega Industrial Development Zone – brings into action the vision of the fourth utility with investors benefiting from the security of supply that Air Products’ air separation unit will bring to the region.
Air Products is providing APM Terminals with welding gases at its Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban and Port Elizabeth sites.
This new business partnership comes off the back of Air Products’ construction of a state-of-the-art air separation unit in Zone 3 of the Coega IDZ, while in Zone 1 APM Terminals is operating a global depot and port terminal to service the needs of shipping lines and cargo owners.
Air Products will commission their plant in the third quarter of next year, taking up its role as the enabler that can offer the Coega IDZ’s manufacturing investor mix a secure supply of industrial gases, as well as for the entire region that has long been under-served.
This enabling role of Air Products within the Coega IDZ tenant mix is reinforced by the deal with APM Terminals, APM Terminals Depot Manager, Jason Govender, emphasises the company’s reliance on gas in their operations.
“Our business is reliant on gas for all our operations and stable supply is critical,” explains Govender. “We have worked with Air Products in Johannesburg for some time now. With their building of an Air Separation Unit in the Coega IDZ it means reduced costs and secure supply for us, and our customers in the Eastern Cape.”
Govender said the national deal was secured because of the impeccable service delivered by Air Products through an already established Johannesburg contract.
“We were pleased with the service we were receiving in Johannesburg and this sparked our interest in partnering with Air Products on a national level. It also benefits us that we are both tenants of the Coega IDZ. When Air Products moves into their new plant next year we are looking forward to even more efficient service and convenience thanks to the close proximity to our site,” said Govender.
APM Terminals is a global depot and port terminal operating company that offers to shipping lines and cargo owners a full range of services for dry and reefer containers, which includes landside services such as repairs, handling, storage, monitoring and container conversion. They make use of industrial gas to cut the damaged parts of the containers.
“We chose Air Products for delivery on their promise to deliver service with a difference, and a thorough understanding of our business and our business needs. We are excited by the possibilities of a fruitful business partnership,” said Govender.
Air Products’ Port Elizabeth-based sales engineer, Justin Lavery, said they presented APM Terminals with an engineering solution for all of their welding and cutting applications that suited their business needs most optimally.
“We take pride in providing our clients with a specialised and convenient service and will continue providing our clients with quality gas products that are available on demand because that’s a steadfast credo we live by,” says Lavery.
Coega Development Corporation’s Marketing and Communications Manager, Ayanda Vilakazi, adds that this kind of business-to-business dealings is exactly the business environment that the CDC aims to create with the complementary cluster groups housed within the Coega IDZ.
“We are pleased to see that the investors in the Coega IDZ are working together to ensure that the supply chain linkages within the Coega IDZ are boosted – thereby stimulating the socio-economic growth of the Eastern Cape as a whole,” said Vilakazi.
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