Pretoria – The City of Tshwane will spend R188m on land on which to build an Automotive City in Rosslyn, Mayor Kgosientso Ramokgopa announced on Thursday.
"The City is currently engaged in the process of establishing the Tshwane Automotive City in Rosslyn, which includes the purchasing of land parcels to the value of R188m," said Ramokgopa.
"This development will take the form of a long-term partnership between the AIDC, the City’s economic development agency, TEDA and the City of Tshwane and is aimed at establishing a second Automotive City within the African continent," he said.
Ramokgopa was speaking during his State of the City Address at Freedom Park, where he told guests that the automotive industry was very important for the city as it accounted for 12% of Tshwane’s economy.
"The role of the automotive industry is notable as the transport industry in Tshwane grew from R 23.9bn in 2010 to R 28.9bn in 2015, thereby accounting for approximately 12% of Tshwane’s economy and growing at an average of 3.9% per annum," he said.
BMW commitment to SA
"The transport sector also accounts for 6% of total Tshwane employment and 9% of national transport employment. Further highlighting the importance of the sector is the fact that Tshwane accounted for approximately 41% of the automotive industry’s exports in 2010 and this has increased to 50% in 2014," Ramokgopa said.
He said, in November 2015, the BMW Group reaffirmed its long-term commitment to South Africa by announcing that it would invest a total of R6bn at its Rosslyn Plant in Tshwane.
Ramokgopa said the investment, which was one of the largest in the local automotive industry, would enable the Rosslyn plant to produce the next generation of the BMW X3 that would be sold locally and exported to various countries across the world.
"Aptly informed by the demand for new vehicles on the continent, Nissan South Africa has pronounced on its plans to increase production of its new model bakkie at its Rosslyn Plant in Tshwane, which will see potential production rising to 80 000 by 2018," he said.
"In addition, the Ford Motor Company will invest R2.5bn in its Silverton plant to commence production of the Everest SUV, which is envisaged to create an additional 1 200 jobs."