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Coega WINs BIG at 6th Annual SA Premier Business Awards

Mar 14, 2019
Coega WINs BIG at 6th Annual SA Premier Business Awards

Coega walks away with the Investor of the Year Award at the Oscars of SA Business

The Coega Development Corporation (CDC), which runs the Coega SEZ just outside of Port Elizabeth, walked away with the prestigious Investor of the Year Award, at the 6th Annual SA Premier Business Awards.

“We are delighted to have won such a prestigious award. It’s a validation of the hard work we put in consistently to attract & retain investors at the Coega Special Economic Zone (SEZ),” says Dr. Ayanda Vilakazi, CDC unit head brand, marketing & communications.

The category won by the CDC seeks to encourage the expansion of investment into the South African economy. It recognises efforts and commitments by local and global companies to create jobs and stimulate the economy through investment across all industry.

Since inception in 1999, the CDC as a SoC involved in the development of the Coega SEZ and as one of the leading infrastructure development and facilities management agency in the country (IA) has created 112,974 jobs (direct and indirect). In the 2017/18FY including year to date as at February 2019, the CDC created a total of 19, 402 jobs. This is accompanied by 8210 ‘during peak season’ operational jobs created as a result of the 43 operational companies located at the Coega SEZ. Mindful of the importance of skills and training, the CDC has further trained in excess of 92, 583 people since inception.

The clarion call made by President Cyril Ramaphosa to raise $100 billion (R 1,4 trillion) over the next 5 five years keeps us wide awake. In an effort to encourage growth in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) for the Sub Saharan region, the Coega SEZ has dedicated much of its long-term strategy to focus on investment opportunities, which seek to secure a firm position for Africa globally. As a result, Coega SEZ is recognised as the leading SEZ in Africa and a gateway to world markets.

“The SEZ’s strategic location and adjacency to the deep water Port of Ngqura has seen it become a springboard to investors looking to explore the greater African market. “Our location is unique; it provides an opportunity for potential investors to penetrate the African market,” adds Dr. Vilakazi.

The Coega SEZ serves as a one-stop metropolis for all things export-related, it currently boost 43 operational investors (local & international). Over eighty percent (80%) of these companies have seen an increase in their productivity and profits since starting operations in the zone, with the benefits being felt throughout the Eastern Cape and in areas where the CDC is operating.

“This has led to the Coega SEZ becoming home to various leading Fortune 500 companies seeking access to a wider market. At the Coega SEZ there are currently forty-three (43) operational investors with an investment portfolio in excess of R7-billion including investors playing both in the African and wider global market. By year end 2019/20, the CDC is projecting an increase in the number of operational investors in the Coega SEZ to 50 worth R8, 24 billion in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI),” adds Dr. Vilakazi. 

Mega Projects at Coega

The Coega SEZ is currently home to two Fortune 500 companies seeking access to a wider market.

First Automotive Works (FAW) SA an investment worth R600 million located in zone 2 of the Coega SEZ has since its establishment rev up to become the SA’s second biggest truck exporter. The truck plant have had a great run in the African market with some of their trucks proving to be customer favourites in Tanzania and the wider SADAC market.

Another Fortune 500 company which recently completed phase 1 of their construction is BAIC SA. The investment valued at R11 billion, once operational will enhance the diverse portfolio of export orientated investors at the Coega SEZ.

According to BAIC SA, the total local labour employed on the project since its commencement until last year totaled 1?839 construction jobs. According to BAIC SA production at the plant was to be ramped up over a three-year period from the commencement of production to 50?000 vehicles a year, with production thereafter up-scaled to 100?000 units a year.

Of this, 40?percent were destined for sale in South Africa and 60?percent for export markets, including countries in Africa and South America.

The Dedisa Power Peaking Plant, a 342 MW peaking facility is located in Zone 13 of the Coega SEZ and is valued at R3.5 billion. The project, operational since September 2015, has seen it contribute to the critical national power grid and during its construction it created over 1490 construction jobs.

Image: CONGRATULATIONS:receiving the award last night is second from left – Christopher Mashigo – CDC Business Development Executive Manager, Dr Ayanda Vilakazi, CDC unit head marketing, brand & communication; Lionel Billings, CDC Chief Financial Officer (CFO) & Yunus Hoosen, Acting CEO of InvestSA.

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