Coega kicks off new year with big plans for EC

2017-01-11 06:01

THE Coega Development Corporation (CDC) opened its doors on January 3 with revived vigour and optimism.

“The start of this year is a continuation of the hard work already put in by everyone. The year 2017 ushers the CDC into the final quarter of the Financial Year 2016/17,” said Dr Ayanda Vilakazi, CDC unit head marketing and communications.

The organisation is optimistic that this year will once again highlight the Coega Industrial Development Zone (IDZ) as a prime investment destination of choice culminating in several projects coming to the shores of the Nelson Mandela Bay (NMB).

All of this combusted with the CDC taking on projects outside of the IDZ through its infrastructure development programme with the objective of expediting service delivery to South African citizens on behalf of government.

Projects currently under construction within the IDZ are no fewer than 6 (six). At least five (5) of these are expected to become operational by end of the FY 2016/17.

“Of critical importance for the CDC is the projects contribution to socio-economic development,” says Dr Vilakazi.

“Five hundred and fifty five (555) people are currently contracted on the projects in the IDZ, 70% of who are Nelson Mandela Bay-based residents. Giving credence to our vision to become the leading catalyst for championing of the socio-economic growth,” says Vilakazi.

In the 2015/2016 period, CDC created 18 366 jobs (96 776 since inception), through projects in the IDZ and its infrastructure development programme. In addition, the CDC had 36 operational investors with a combined investment value of R6.609 billion.

Some of the highlight projects within the IDZ for the year ahead include:

•The construction commencement of BAIC for a completely knocked down (CKD) automotive manufacturing plant in the Coega IDZ

•Implementation of energy-related projects such as the gas-to-power programme with 1000 MW of the power facility allocated to the IDZ. This project is key for energy security, diversity and socio-economic development.

According to Statistics South Africa (StatsSA), in the 2015/2016 financial year the CDC contributed 0,15% to the Eastern Cape’s GDP and 0,42% to the Nelson Mandela Bay’s economy and in this current financial year (2016/17), the CDC is projecting to add even more.

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