Investment opportunities abound as R2bn industrial park upgrades begin
27 November 2019 | Web Article Number: ME201917296
Eastern Cape Development Corporation (ECDC) is nearing completion of the first phase of the R2-billion Dimbaza Industrial Park revitalisation project.
This phase of the project comprises security upgrades which come at a price tag of R50 million which is financed by the Department of Trade and Industry. The upgrades, which includes fencing, construction of guard houses and the installation of high mast lights, are due to be completed in February 2020.
When fully operational, the 156-hectare industrial park, which has 72 factories, is expected to employ 3125 people. This number excludes ancillary services such as workers employed at security companies and cleaning companies.
Currently, 161 jobs have been created this first phase. Furthermore, 18 small businesses from the local community have been supported. The Department of Economic Development, Environmental Affair and Tourism has also approved R104 million as part of the second phase of the project from the Provincial Stimulus Fund for road and services upgrades. This includes the construction of a separate entrance into the park from the R63.
“Funding has been approved from the Provincial Stimulus Fund for the second phase, while the waste-water treatment works upgrade portion has also been co-funded by the BCMM which has committed R14 million towards this project over a three-year period,” said ECDC chief executive officer Ndzondelelo Dlulane.
“In 2017 the Dimbaza Industrial Park masterplan was approved. The revitalisation is meant to attract investors into the park and to lobby for investment incentives for the parks in order to revive vibrant economic activity while facilitating job creation. Already, eight companies have signed letters of intent to move into the industrial park. There are many other companies which have expressed interest in moving their operations to Dimbaza. They are finalising their letters of intent.”
Dlulane said the five-phase revitalisation of the park is a five-year programme which includes implementation of bulk infrastructure in phase two and the development of an agro-processing hub as a third phase. The latter will include hydroponics, aquaponics, a food factory complex, processing, packaging, warehousing and distribution.
The fourth phase involves the construction of community structures such as community collection points such as free range chicken structures. The fifth phase is the development of retail and residential structures for factory workers.
“Dimbaza is strategically located in so far as the delivery of products is concerned. It is close to Bulembu Airport and it is in close proximity to the East London and Port Elizabeth ports for the ease of movement of goods. There is already infrastructure which needs to be refurbished to support productive activity. This revitalisation will stimulate the economy of the region,” Dlulane said.