Limpopo plans to create ‘thousands of jobs’

2012-09-12 15:01

The Limpopo provincial government plans to create “thousands of jobs” by adding value to minerals such as platinum and coal and establishing factories to process agricultural produce.

Briefing the media in Polokwane yesterday on the performance of the province’s economic cluster in the first quarter of the current financial year, Roads and Transport MEC Pitsi Moloto said “six mineral beneficiation projects and 12 in agro-processing have been identified”.

Although Moloto would not reveal the nature of the projects, he said they will be announced to the public when the province releases its 5-year Industrial Development Master Plan.

City Press understands that the province plans to lure investors into establishing factories to process platinum and coal instead of selling them in raw form.

“As a province we can’t be permanently dependent on agriculture, we need to industrialise,” Moloto said.

“The key part of our industrialisation plan centres on beneficiation. We need to move away from agriculture if we are to be competitive and create jobs.”

He added that the Limpopo department of economic development, environmental affairs and tourism has also monitored and facilitated support to 73 cooperatives and facilitated access to market opportunities to 36 small and medium enterprises.

During the same quarter, the departments of agriculture and public works created more than 25 000 expanded public works programme jobs.

“We have made a serious dent in the levels of poverty. These jobs will go on for about a year,” he said, adding that the challenge was to find sustainable jobs.

Meanwhile, the province’s executive committee will convene a lekgotla today and tomorrow.

Limpopo provincial government spokesman Tebatso Mabitsela said, among others, the objectives of the Lekgotla will be to:

» Assess the performance of municipalities in the current financial year;

» Evaluate progress made on the implementation of government’s five priorities; and

» Assess progress made on the implementation of the Clean Audit 2014 strategy.

The province also announced ’nit will change its current number plate to make it more standard and add security features.

Some Limpopo cars still use “N” for Northern Province, which was the province’s former name.

The new plate will be effective from April 1 2013.

Moloto also announced a 24-hour shift system in traffic law enforcement from November 1.

Currently, traffic law enforcement operates two shifts, starting at 6am and ending at 8pm.

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