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THE ECONOMIC OVERVIEW OF KWAZULU-NATAL 2011 - Grant Adlam

2011-06-25

KwaZulu-Natal Overview: Grant Adlam

A Vibrant and Growing Economy

KwaZulu-Natal, one of nine provinces, has historically been a key component of the South African economy. The Durban bay was sighted by the Portuguese discoverer Vasco da Gama on Christmas Day 1497. As Christmas is translated in Portuguese
as Natal, this gave the original name to the region. KwaZulu meaning the place of the Zulu, has been added more recently, to give the final name for the province of
KwaZulu-Natal.
Over time the province has grown into a vibrant region, which is home to diverse
ethnic groups. In the present day, a number of unbeatable factors contribute to
the province's worth, including abundant resources, effective infrastructure, sound logistics, good communication and a thriving economy.

Resources
KwaZulu-Natal has a business-friendly environment with an informed financial
system. There is widespread availability of energy, water and sewerage utilities
and the telecommunications system links to regional and global markets.
The province has a good supply of natural, mineral and metal resources.
KwaZulu-Natal is blessed with an abundance of industries that add value to
these resources including: aluminium, automotive, transport, warehousing, finance,
real estate, clothing and textiles as well as petro-chemicals. The exceptional
use of resources is apparent in the growth of the active KwaZulu-Natal economy.
According to latest figures, out of the nine South African provinces, KwaZulu-Natal
is the second highest contributor to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
The contribution to the country's GDP was at a steady average of 16.4% in
the period between 1995 and 2009.


Government
The provincial government of KwaZulu-Natal is committed to providing stability and effective governance, which is the foundation for sustained economic growth. Increased political tolerance has also contributed to solidity in the province. The recent local government elections were declared free and fair by the province's electoral chief. KwaZulu-Natal had a 61.53% voter turnout which exceeded the national average by 12%. The African National Congress (ANC) secured 982 of the 1954 seats available in KwaZulu-Natal municipalities. It was followed by the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) with 369 seats and its breakaway party, the National Freedom Party (NFP) with 227 seats. The ANC obtained an outright majority in 50 municipalities, IFP in six, and the NFP in two. The Democratic Alliance had increased its presence in KwaZulu-Natal by obtaining 147 seats.



Infrastructure
KwaZulu-Natal's well-developed infrastructure includes an excellent road/rail system with access to two deep water ports. Durban and Richards Bay ports are southern Africa's busiest in terms of handling cargo by value and bulk respectively. Of major significance is that the ports of Durban and Richards Bay, around which KwaZulu-Natal is established, are two of Africa's gateways to the sea-lanes of the world. Currently 70% of the goods reaching Durban carry on to other provinces. The ports provide a key competitive advantage and effectively position the region to increase its share of the global market.

As a consequence of the location of the two ports, Durban and Richards Bay have developed into major cities. Other key towns in the province include Pietermaritzburg, Newcastle, Ladysmith, Margate, Kokstad, Pinetown, Port Shepstone, and Umhlanga Rocks.

Further development of the transport corridor, linking Durban to Gauteng, the inland economic heartland has tremendous economic potential. This corridor means that Durban can supply Gauteng with a variety of manufactured goods with the overall aim being to integrate air, land and sea transport. In the future, the new dual freeway road corridor between Durban and Richards Bay will stimulate growth by effectively linking the two ports. In his 2011 State of the Province Speech, Premier Zweli Mkhize said R37,12-billion would be invested in the Richards Bay and Durban port rail corridors over the next five years, creating 9000 jobs.

Durban is the busiest port in Africa, handling 8 000 ship movements an hour. Durban is home to two of the region's busiest container terminals, the Durban Container
Terminal(DCT) and Pier 1. The port is South Africa's premier container, vehicle and liquid bulk port, and provides break bulk and MPT, dry bulk, ship repair, cruise liner, navy, fishing and recreational facilities. The R300-million harbour entrance-widening project was completed in March 2010. The project, which was commissioned by Transnet, widened the entrance from 120m to 220m and deepened it from 12.8m to 19m at its deepest point. This allows 9 000-TEU container vessels to safely navigate the entrance.

Durban Port has been allocated a further R6, 5-billion over the next five years to meet continued growth in cargo demands by Transnet. Projects include the effective utilisation of land around the container port, back-of-port development, more efficient maintenance of equipment and the upgrading of all berths, including those at Maydon Wharf. Trasnet is also looking at a multi-billion rand capital investment into Durban's Pier 2 Container Terminal which is South Africa's largest single container terminal. The old equipment at the facility, especially the cranes, require upgrading.

The proposed dug-out port earmarked for development at the old Durban International Airport (DIA) site will cost Transnet an estimated R100-billion to purchase the land and complete the first phase of the project. The dug-out port would provide berthing facilities of 16 container, five automotive and four bulk liquid berths. The initial cost includes basic port infrastructure and four container berths.

Richards Bay anchors the country's largest harbour, the world's largest coal export terminal and numerous giant industries and operations. The town is strategically positioned relative to inland markets and tourist attractions such as the iSimangaliso Wetland Park.

Since its opening, the Port of Richards Bay has expanded rapidly with the establishment of one new berth every second year on average, proudly fulfilling its aim of making it South Africa's leading port in terms of cargo volumes. Transnet Port Terminals is preparing for the next economic boom by creating additional capacity at Richards Bay Port and investing in state of the art equipment at the container terminal. The South African government is supporting a range of moves to stimulate investment in the Richards Bay Industrial Development Zone (RBIDZ).
The King Shaka International Airport (KSIA) has been opened for just over a year and already is achieving much praise. The airport was named Africa's best regional airport in the 2011 Skytrax Airport awards and third best overall airport in Africa by the Airports Council International (ACI). General manager Terence Delomoney said, "We were competing against tough competition in the globally recognised and independent rating programmes of Skytrax and ACI. It shows that we can compete with the best in the world and have a world class airport in Durban."
The KSIA is not just an airport but incorporates a 36-ha trade zone. The Dube TradePort will accommodate a cargo terminal that is the first of its kind for Africa, a perishables centre, warehousing and light manufacturing facilities. The Dube TradePort aims to turn the surrounding precinct into an "aerotropolis" - or airport city - over the next few decades. The R130-million Dube City is the first phase of the commercial property development at Dube TradePort and the new Dube TradePort headquarters is the first green building to go up. The headquarters will be the first Green Star-rated building at an airport site in Africa and among the first in the world. The multibillion-rand initiative "Dube City" is expected to secure billions of rand in property development over the next five to 10 years, including office blocks, airport hotels, upmarket retail outlets, restaurants, medical facilities and other leisure options. KZN Economic Development and Tourism MEC Michael Mabuyakhulu said that King Shaka was never intended to be just an airport. He said, "When we decided to invest in King Shaka, we made it very clear that we did not just want to relocate from the old Durban airport. It was part of a bigger plan to secure new economic activities into KZN, in addition to regaining international air connectivity for the region."

Currently Air Mauritius and Emirates operate international flights from the KSIA. Air Emirates is planning a twice daily flight to Dubai from Durban by October of this year. JSE-listed airline operator Comair recently announced that it would establish a direct air route out of the new airport to London's Gatwick International and a network of Africa routes over the next few years. Comair is the biggest user of King Shaka International through its low-cost airline kulula.com and its British Airways domestic offering. The deal also entails King Shaka International Airport getting a business class lounge in its departures area and Dube TradePort investing up to R130-million in an aircraft services facility at the airport.


The Economy

The recent performance indicators illustrate that KwaZulu-Natal growth profile averaged about 3.3% between 1994 and 2010. There has been a shift from relatively primary centred to more service oriented economy. The private sector remains a crucial driver of economic activity in the country through its investment in the real economy to generate economic value and create jobs.

KwaZulu-Natal has aligned its current economic growth programmes with the national government programme the "New Growth Path" which is directed at unleashing the national economic ability to create more job opportunities through the activation of various sectors by the state in partnership with its social partners in the private sector. KwaZulu-Natal has therefore embraced six key sector-specific pillars of the New Growth Path as reflected below and is determined to capitalise on those sectors.

• Infrastructure, through the massive expansion of transport, energy, water, communications capacity and housing, underpinned by a strong focus on domestic industry to supply components for the build-programmes
• The Agricultural value chain, with a focus on expanding farm-output and employment and increasing the agro-processing sector
• The Mining value chain, with a particular emphasis on mineral beneficiation as well as on increasing the rate of minerals extraction
• The Green economy, with programmes in green energy, component manufacture and services manufacturing sectors
• Tourism and certain high-level services
• Manufacturing, which remains one of the mainstays of the economy, requires attention


Infrastructure
The government of KwaZulu-Natal announced a budget of R11-billion for this year which will be invested in various projects for much needed public infrastructure delivery such as roads, housing, schools and health facilities. More jobs would be created during the construction of public infrastructure and an additional R30-billion would be spent over the next three years. This programme would benefit local supplies and boost the construction sector enormously.

South Africa's Department of Water Affairs is to spend more than R2-billion on the construction of a massive dam that is expected to provide water to more than two-million people in KwaZulu-Natal. Construction work on the Spring Grove Dam and its water transfer system was expected to begin next year, with the completion date set for 2014. The dam will deliver bulk raw water to the eThekwini Municipality where millions of people are expected to benefit.



Agriculture
KwaZulu-Natal is South Africa's best watered province, has a larger
area of high quality agricultural land than any other province, and is the
national leader in several agricultural products. The midlands area between Pietermaritzburg and the Drakensberg is the heart of this high quality agricultural
area with a concentration of vegetable, dairy and stock-farms. The KwaZulu-Natal coastal belt yields sugar cane, wood, oranges, bananas, mangoes and
other tropical fruit. Forestry in the areas around Vryheid, Eshowe, Richmond,
Harding and Ngome is another major source of income.
KwaZulu-Natal offers plenty of opportunities in a range of products including
herbs and spices, medicinal plants, nuts, fruits and vegetables and aromatic
plants for essential oil production. Enterprise iLembe, the economic
development arm of the iLembe District Municipality, is working to promote
the north coast area as a new wine farm destination. The development of
a wine industry in KwaZulu-Natal offers substantial employment to the
region, in both agriculture and tourism.

Mining Value Chain
In essence, the New Growth Path's mining value chain strategy outlines
a framework "that will enable an orderly development of the country's
mineral value chains, thus ensuring South Africa's mineral wealth is
developed to its full potential and to the benefit of the entire population."
KwaZulu-Natal's mineral sands and coal mines are important to the
province's economy albeit in a small way. The export facilities at Richards Bay,
which handle most of the minerals mined further north in South Africa,
make a massive contribution to the functioning of the country's mining sector.
The current focus on the mining value chain is expected to play a key role
in the country's industrialisation programme. The aim of the programme
is to drive economic growth through increased beneficiation of minerals
which will also increase the value of exports. The benefits of the programme
will contribute towards the creation of sustainable jobs. The strategy is aimed
at providing opportunities for long-term investments for both local and international investors into the beneficiation sector. The government is playing a vital role in encouraging the growth of smaller entrepreneurs by offering incentives to large
mining companies using services and products of smaller companies at the
upstream stages of the value chain. There is an opportunity to reopen some
of the coal mines which have closed down in KwaZulu-Natal.
Green Economy
Many of the companies operating in KwaZulu-Natal are committed to ensuring
that their business concerns are not only sustainable and profitable, but contribute
to the overall well being of KwaZulu-Natal's environment, resources, people, and economic growth.

The government of KwaZulu-Natal has recognised the need to encourage the transformation of the province's economy to a green economy. In a report for
the KZN Department of Economic Development and Tourism titled
Unlocking the KwaZulu-Natal Green Economy (UKZN School of Development
Studies, Futureworks & Eco-futures January 2011*) a number of factors were
identified as contributing to the need to transform. These include:
  • Global trends, especially international concerns relating to climate change
  • Environmental legislation and regulation
  • The need to protect the environment
  • Good environmental corporate citizenship
  • The better and sustainable use of resources
  • Energy demands
  • Tourism

A number of greening initiatives are already underway in KwaZulu-Natal.
The KZN Integrated Greening Initiative is a partnership between the
Wildlands Conservation Trust and the KwaZulu-Natal government.
"The programme aims to develop and implement a wide range of
community-based greening activities. These will stimulate local economic development whilst nurturing the establishment of vibrant, self motivated
communities that are clean, green and driven by inspired 'green-preneurs',"
said Wildlands CEO Dr Andrew Venter.

Other initiatives underway include:
  • The Green Building Council's green star rating system
  • The Master Builders Association's greening programme
  • The Construction Industry Development Board's best practice project assessment scheme
  • The KZN Institute of Architecture's greening and sustainability training
  • programme
  • The SA Property Owners Association's focus on green buildings
  • KZN Sustainable Energy Forum
  • Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport encourages its members in the area of green supply chain management
  • The Federated Hospitality Association of South Africa encourages the greening of the tourism sector (including the Imvelo Awards)
  • Sappi, Mondi and NCT have achieved significant progress in sustainable forest management

A wide range of economic opportunities to grow the green economy in the province have been identified:
  • Management of natural resources (e.g. watershed management, alien vegetation eradication, and the payment for ecosystem services) and their harvesting and transformation into goods and services (e.g. medicinal tea, indigenous plants)
  • Subsistence fisheries and coastal recreation and leisure
  • Organic farming, especially for emerging farmer and in traditional authority areas, food security initiatives
  • Green tourism accreditation, the clustering of tourism activities, niche tourism, and sourcing products from local communities.
  • Wind and biomass energy; the forestry reframing itself as an energy industry relating to biofuels and carbon trading; a growing energy services sector; neighbourhood mini-grids
  • Development of green building materials, retrofitting existing buildings, and creating decent jobs through the reintroduction of apprenticeships
  • Alternative road materials and fuels; to improve efficiencies in freight movement (particularly from road to rail), the reform of public transport, and the greening of road construction activities.
  • Foreign investment in greening initiatives in the retail and manufacturing sectors
  • Waste management buy back centres, 'Waste for Food', as well as reuse and recycling
  • Green professional services and related innovative research
Across sectors, green procurement and tendering processes provides a
considerable growth opportunity for the green economy as does the potential
for corporates to invest in green social responsibility projects.
Please add at bottom of page as a footnote)

Tourism and Sport
Despite its distance from the affluent first world markets, South Africa ranks
within the top 30 tourism destinations in the world. KwaZulu-Natal is now
the market leader for domestic tourism in South Africa, as well as is number
two in term of international tourism. KwaZulu-Natal has great accommodation
facilities, wonderful leisure and recreation opportunities, a rich history and
diverse cultures. Many interesting sites have a colourful history of heroic
people, struggles and wars represented in numerous battle sites. Zulu
culture and history forms a key part of the province's heritage and the Zulu
monarchy of KwaZulu-Natal is the only monarchy specifically provided for
in South Africa's constitution. As such KwaZulu-Natal's history and culture
has not been forgotten in the face of progress.
KwaZulu-Natal boasts two World Heritage Sites - the Isimangaliso Wetland
Park and the Ukhahlamba Drakensberg Park. Superb beaches of world-class
quality are to be found along virtually the entire coastline.
The Durban ICC remains the best conference centre in Africa and the
promotion of business tourism to the province has many spin-offs for
the holiday destinations.
The annual Tourism Indaba 2011 has become an important event on
Durban's calendar. Attendance at this year's Indaba was estimated to have
been between 10 000 and 11 000 delegates. The eThekwini Municipality's
Head of Business Support and Tourism, Philip Sithole, said this year's Indaba, generated close to R300-million for the city's economy. "However it is important
to note that this figure is based not only on the four days of the event. Many people come to Durban two days before the event starts and others leave two day
after it ends," he said. "The value of having an event of this importance in
Durban cannot be underestimated. It creates huge awareness of the City,
especially coming after all the improvements of the World Cup last year.
"Indaba puts Durban on the centre of the tourism stage and gives us the
opportunity to show people all we have to offer," Sithole said.
Cruise Tourism is a burgeoning niche market and more than 60 cruise
ships have visited KwaZulu-Natal since November 2010. Cruise liners include
the Queen Mary, MSC Sinfoni, MSC Melody, as well as, amongst others,
liners from Princess Cruises, and Crystal Cruises. The recent hosting of
the Seatrade Africa Cruise Forum attracted many operators and promoted
KwaZulu-Natal as a world class and globally competitive destination.
Durban has been listed as one of the top ten family beach holiday cities in
the world by travel publishers Lonely Planet. The central beachfront upgrade
has transformed Durban's renowned beachfront into a feature of which the
city can be justly proud. The promenade provides kilometres of uninterrupted
sea views, restaurants and other amenities to the benefit of all. Visitors to the beachfront will be greeted by the sight of walkers, joggers, bikers, kids playing
football or beach volleyball as well as fisherman, surfers and swimmers.
Landscaping has played an important role in Durban's beachfront upgrade
programme and involves protecting and re-establishing the beach dunes
and adding and preserving plant life, both on the dunes and along the
promenade.
A current provincial strategy focuses on ensuring that world class events are
attracted to KwaZulu-Natal, which reinforces our passion for sport, art and
culture.
The Moses Mabhida Stadium is undeniably a defining landmark of Durban's
skyline. The stadium is not only a tourist attraction in its own right, but also the centrepiece of the King's Park Sporting Precinct. The multi-disciplinary aspect
of the stadium's design allows a wide range of sporting and cultural events to
be hosted, putting it on a par with other international venues such as the
Stade du France and Wembley Stadium. The Moses Mabhida pitch has been
designed to meet the requirements of major sporting bodies such as FIFA, International Rugby Board (IRB), and the South African Football Association (SAFA).
As the tourism sector has tremendous potential for future growth, a number of marketing initiatives are aimed at giving KwaZulu-Natal an opportunity to overtake
the Western Cape as the leading destination for international tourists.
These include:
  • The packaging of mega beach resorts and sourcing of investors to support the
  • global competitiveness study outcomes and to position KwaZulu-Natal as a beach destination, particularly for land locked countries.
  • The development of niche tourism including: cruises, golf, health and hunting.
Manufacturing

After Gauteng Province, KwaZulu-Natal's diversified manufacturing sector
is the second largest in the country. Currently the manufacturing sector has
remained robust, contributing close to 20% of GDP. The manufacturing
sector is geared for export, with nearly a third of South Africa's manufactured
exports being produced here. According to the provincial government, manufacturing
is the biggest contributor to the province's gross geographic product (GGP).
Serious, globally competitive manufacturers with original designs and great components are located in the region. The largest manufacturing industries
are the automobile and component sector, pulp and paper products, chemicals
and petrochemicals, and food and beverages.
More than 50 major automotive component suppliers including Toyota, MAN Truck
and Bus SA, Volvo Trucks and Bell Equipment operate in KwaZulu-Natal, with 18
of them being secondary suppliers providing individual components or raw
materials to the manufacturers of components or sub-assemblies for the motor assembly plants. The industry generates strong linkages with:
• Input industries such as aluminium, chemicals, electronics, leather & textiles, plastics, steel, machinery and equipment,
• Service industries such as engineering, logistics, tooling,
• Others such as financial, wholesale & retail, advertising.

The Maritime Vessel Construction and Repair (MVC&R) sector, also known as
the ship building industry, is vast and fast evolving. Durban boasts the largest
and busiest ship repair facility on the South African coast and one of the most
efficient in the southern hemisphere. The firms of Elgin Brown & Hamer,
Southern African Shipyards and Dormac Marine each have their own fully
equipped repair quays including heavy cranes and machine shops to handle
almost any job.

KwaZulu-Natal's textiles and clothing sector continues to be a very important
employer. Two international safety-footwear firms operate out of Pinetown:
Beier Industries and Bata Industrials. Pietermaritzburg is also known as a
centre for carpet manufacture, with Belgotex Floorcoverings having the largest
facility in the southern hemisphere at 155 000 square metres. The KwaZulu-Natal Clothing and Textile Cluster (KZNCTC) established a Sector Business Support
Centre in Newcastle, aimed at regenerating the area's clothing and textile industry.
Manufacturing in the Richards Bay region includes two world-class aluminium smelters, a leading phosphoric acid and granular fertilizer plant, and a major pulp
and linerboard mill.

Services Sector
The local services industry is the fastest growing sector in the local economy.
A strongly performing regional economy is well correlated with the performance
of the business support services sector. For the big players to function efficiently, service providers need to be operating effectively too. Many of the sub sectors
such as finance, real estate and business services, and wholesale and retail
trade are amongst the top performing sectors of the province's economy.

KwaZulu-Natal is deliberately positioning itself as a destination for call centres
and business-process outsourcing. Investors are encouraged to invest in
these sectors because of the low transport and infrastructure costs, the low
attrition rate, excellent communications structure and global connectivity. The
newly launched KZN BPO Park will include a plug and play Call Centre facility
which investors will be able to use to fulfil their BPS needs. It will boast fully implemented call centre facilities and will cater for a maximum of 4000 call
centre operators.

Unsurpassed quality of life
And if all the above reasons are not sufficient, there are even more advantages
if you look, as the wider social fabric cannot be ignored. There is plenty of land,
houses to suit most income groups, good medical care and education.
KwaZulu-Natal offers an unmatchable combination of assets- sunshine,
leisure opportunities, relaxed lifestyle, and a growing economy.

Pietermaritzburg in the Msunduzi Local Municipality is the capital city of the
province. The "City of Choice" combines both style and vitality. Apart from a
hub of governance, the city is a regional centre for impressive sports events,
outdoor festivals, shows, education, and the arts such as the Comrades Marathon,
the Duzi Marathon, the Royal Show, the Hilton Arts Festival, Art in the Park
and Cars in the Park and international cycling events.

The Pietermaritzburg area is ideally positioned as a base for manufacturing, particularly aluminium, chemicals, food, furniture, timber and leather products. Many major companies, like Alltube, Willowton Oil and Hulamin have established themselves in the vicinity and further opportunities exist.

The Pietermaritzburg Airport Airlink service has recently doubled its flights to Johannesburg allowing for greater ease of access to the capital city.

eThekwini Metropolitan (Durban and surrounding towns) is the economic
powerhouse of the province and a very promising global competitor. The GDP generated ranks eThekwini as the second largest economic centre behind Johannesburg. eThekwini is not only an investment capital, a tourism and
leisure centre, an international logistics management centre, retail node, but
also a cultural and entertainment hub. Currently, the municipality is a substantial administrative centre, providing key public services within the metropolitan area
as well as to the wider region

Recently many of KwaZulu-Natal's firms have moved their head offices to the La Lucia Ridge and Umhlanga area. Large corporations such as Unilever, Rand Merchant Bank, Discovery Health, Deloitte and Liberty Life have chosen the Umhlanga Town Centre as their address.

The impact of the King Shaka International Airport is particularly evident in the
growth of Ballito, adding to its status as the fastest growing node in the country.
The establishment of the iLembe Chamber of Commerce and Industry goes
a long way to confirm the economic growth and potential of the region.

Ballito is experiencing major new developments and investment, including
a new interchange off the N2 freeway where construction is well underway,
and soon to be followed by a new four lane entrance into Ballito, which will
ease traffic flow. The joint project between South African National Roads
Association Limited (Sanral) and the municipality will see the improvement
of the entrance to Ballito from the R102 up to the M4. Clive Greene, Pam Golding Properties' area principal said, "While Ballito remains primarily a holiday town,
figures show that in excess of 50 percent of homes are now permanent
residences and this is increasing rapidly as more and more residential
developments come on stream as more people choose to move here."

The main Lifestyle shopping centre is being further expanded by approximately
3 000 m2 to incorporate an Edgars store, and two new shopping centres are also being built with Woolworths, Game, Checkers and Pick n Pay all taking up
considerable space. In addition, the business park is almost complete with new businesses constantly opening their doors. Currently under construction,
The Quarter, will include showroom, retail and office space and feature a
piazza-style food area. The new complex will be adjacent to an 800-seater
conference centre, the first dedicated venue of its kind in Ballito, which will
be operated by the Signature Group. The aim is to attract both the business
and leisure markets as well as service the needs of the proposed conference
centre and its out-of-town visitors. The completion date is set for the end of
November 2011.

At Blythedale a new town centre is presently going through town planning
which should be launched within the next three years. The approximately
R60 billion development is expected to offer shopping centres, hotels business
parks and residential components.

uThungulu District Municipality on the north coast of Zululand in KwaZulu-Natal perceives tourism development in the area to be a key local economic development initiative. The upgraded Umfolozi Hotel Casino Convention Resort in Empangeni
will be an economic draw card for the town.

Positioned as a major domestic tourist destination, Ugu District Municipality
on the south coast of KwaZulu-Natal is home to several championship golf
courses, game reserves, crocodile farms and traditional cultural attractions.
The Ugu Sports Complex, a new sports development initiated by the Ugu District Municipality is intended to become a catalyst for growth in the region.
The development has been designed to appeal to the local community while
at the same time providing world-class facilities.

Growing Further

The Government of KwaZulu-Natal recognises that investment is critical to the
growth of the provincial economy and aims to ensure that it creates a conducive environment for investment to thrive. MEC for the Department of Economic Development and Tourism KZN, Mr Michael Mabuyakhulu together with Trade & Investment KwaZulu-Natal recently launched an Investment Protocol Handbook
for KZN. MEC Mabuyakhulu said, "As the province of KwaZulu-Natal and the country,
we have - over the past few years - made a sustained focus on removing
bottlenecks and to ensure efficiencies in order to ensure that our province becomes
the investment destination of choice". The Investment Protocol Handbook serves
as a guide to various business policies and processes within KwaZulu-Natal,
with particular focus on the ease and cost of doing business with regard to local
and foreign investments.

A number of packaged projects are available for investment from Trade &
Investment KwaZulu-Natal. These include:
  • The Amajuba 60ha Hydroponic Tech Park
  • The Durban Point Waterfront
  • The Intathakusa Tourism Retreat
  • Mthonjeni Alumium Slug Plant

Currently a major theme in progress has to be that of developing
synergy between the more and less developed sectors of the local
economy and between the public and private sectors. A number of
projects are at different stages of development around the province
and face different challenges. Tongaat Hulett Development company
head, Michael Deighton, said "Each specific initiative has its own
dynamics. All role players in the economy need to commit themselves
to working in cooperation towards the objectives of inclusive sustainable
economic growth. Difficulties abound, but alignment around a
common vision, with a determination not to be put off by short-term
challenges will produce results beyond most people's expectations."

Premier Dr Zweli Mkhize in his State of the Province speech 2011 stated,
"We call on all leaders of all formations of our people to unite and hold
hands in partnership and work together to build KwaZulu-Natal and take
South Africa forward."

Grant Adlam
www.topbusiness.co.za








THE ECONOMIC OVERVIEW OF KWAZULU-NATAL 2011 - Grant Adlam

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