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SPECIAL ECONOMIC ZONES PROGRAMME IMPORTANT TO SA’S ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT – PRESIDENT ZUMA

Posted on: 04 May 2017

The President Jacob Zuma said that the Special Economic Zones (SEZ) Programme is important to South Africa’s economic development goals. President Zuma was speaking at the launch of the Maluti-A-Phofung SEZ in Harrismith, Free State,recently.

He added that the government already attracted over R9 billion worth of investments in all designated SEZs across the country through the SEZ Programme.

“The launch of the Maluti-a-Phofung Special Economic Zone should also remind us of the importance of strong partnerships between the public and private sectors. Government understands and appreciates the role of the private sector as an investor, innovator, trader, creator of jobs, and so on, and understands what the private sector requires to prosper and compete globally. Government is also willing to play its part as a reliable, supportive and responsive partner,” said President Zuma.

He emphasised that it was for this reason that government introduced the SEZ Programme, launched the One Stop Shop through Invest South Africa, works to improve energy security, revitalises the old industrial parks, and continues to implement many other critical initiatives.

The Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr Rob Davies said both the National Development Plan and IPAP have put industrial development at the centre of South Africa’s industrial development efforts.

“We learnt that all countries that have moved from being poor and underdeveloped to being rich and developed have passed through the face of moving from dependence on primary commodity production and export to the production of value-added products through industrialisation. This is the only path that is compatible with the pursuit of our developmental and radical economic transformation goals in order to achieve greater inclusion and involvement of historically disadvantaged people in positions of leadership in our economy,” said Minister Davies.

He added that the country’s eight active SEZs have created over 10 000 direct and 65 000 indirect jobs. The Maluti-A-Phofung SEZ, he said was currently pursuing an investment pipeline of R2.6 billion.

The Premier of the Free State, Mr Ace Magashule said the MAP SEZ will transform Harrismith into a more vibrant area as a result of the jobs that will be created and the infrastructure development that was already taking place in the area.