South Africa’s new SEZ regulations expected to be completed by October

BY TAI CHISHAKWE - AUGUST 21, 2014

The Portfolio Committee on Trade and Industry said on Wednesday it was pleased with the progress made by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) with the preparations for ten new special economic zones (SEZs) to be completed within the next six months.

Trade and Industry Minister Dr Rob Davies is in the process of appointing a SEZ advisory board, as stipulated by the SEZ Act of 2014.

Reports say the new SEZ regulations, which are being developed by the DTI in consultation with various other departments, including National Treasury and the South African Revenue Service, would be completed by October.

One of the ten proposed new SEZs will be based in Mthatha, in the Eastern Cape and will primary be focussed on agro-processing and tourism.

The Committee advised the department not to focus on one sector of the economy with the new SEZs because if that sector collapsed, the SEZs would also face the same fate. It said it was also assured that the existing five SEZs had “turned the corner”.  Currently, Coega IDZ outside Port Elizabeth has 18 investors. 

Photo caption: South Africa's Trade and Industry Minister, Dr Rob Davies.