Local investors make good on promises
The commitments at the presidential investment summit, including domestic investment, are well under way, according to Invest SA, an entity managed by the department of trade & industry that is tracking the implementation of the investment commitments.
Aspen Pharmacare, SA's largest pharmaceutical group, is investing R3.4bn in a sterile anaesthetics-manufacturing facility.
Lorraine Hill, Aspen's group operating officer and responsible pharmacist, said the first phase of the building project had been completed on April 1.
The second phase requires internal modifications and will commence in May.
Hill said the commercial launch of the facility would be in early 2022 and would require specialised skills, with staff having a detailed understanding of the process and equipment.
A new job specification - technical manufacturer, with a minimum entry of a diploma in chemical engineering - will be created.
"The role is supported by other specialist roles such as application specialists, electronic technicians and pharmacists," she said.
Rival Adcock Ingram's construction of a sterile ophthalmic-manufacturing facility in Clayville, Gauteng, is "well advanced".
Value of deals committed at the presidential investment summit that are being implemented
Initially 25 jobs will be created but the facility will enable Adcock to manufacture its own eye-drop products and seek contract manufacturing from other companies.Paper and packaging firm Mondi announced plans to invest about R8bn in SA over the next five years, with more than 2,000 temporary jobs created.A spokesperson said the company would continue investing in forestry assets, and modernisation of its pulp, container-board and paper assets subject to board approval. The Richards Bay mill and Merebank mill and forestry assets will receive further investment this year.Among the other commitments SA is monitoring is the construction of a new R1.5bn smartphone-manufacturing facility by the Mara Group, which kicked off with the signing of a lease agreement at the Dube Tradeport earlier this year. But Mara Group CEO Ashish Thakkar did not respond to further inquiries.Perhaps the most significant job spinner will be the automotive sector, which has committed R40bn.National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of SA CEONational Association of Automobile Manufacturers said the commitment excluded the 2017 investment by Chinese vehicle manufacturer BAIC but included the R10bn committed by Mercedes-Benz to upgrade its facility in East London.Mabasa said the R40bn related to aggregate capital expenditure by all seven major light-vehicle manufacturers in the next five years.
Nissan said its investment would create 400 new permanent jobs and 1,200 additional positions in the value chain.
A Vodacom spokesperson said R50bn would be invested into network infrastructure in rural areas and the improvement of network quality and performance.
Yunus Hoosen, head of Investment SA, said investments were significantly more than the R187bn announced in January. "We're actively working to unblock, fast-track and reduce red tape in government. Those are issues regarding visas, permits, regulatory issues, mining permits, environmental impact assessment, land transfers, building permits, centre facilitation, municipal facilitation and infrastructure issues."
"A number of the projects are happening, there are one or two slight delays. There is nothing extraordinary that we need to be really worried about."..