Coega project could bring motor industry exports up to speed

Posted On Thursday, 15 April 2004 02:00 Published by eProp Commercial Property News
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THE controversial Coega industrial development zone offers "enormous" potential value to the country's much-vaunted motor vehicle industry as it could present a solution to the industry's logistical woes.

Property-Housing-Residential"As one of the largest infrastructure projects in Africa, the new harbour could ease the auto industry's logistical problems experienced at other local ports," says Port Elizabeth Regional Chamber of Commerce and Industry CEO Alfred da Costa.

Motor vehicle companies are among exporters that suffered when the country's main ports became heavily congested last year. Turnaround times at Durban harbour are still not at the desired level.

Da Costa says Coega could provide an ideal location as a transit point for shipments passing between the Far East, Europe and South America.

Government is pouring several billion rand into infrastructure development, including a deep-water port at the Coega zone near Port Elizabeth.

The zone forms part of government's efforts to attract large investments into export-orientated manufacturing operations.

But the zone has failed to secure any large tenants to date, leading some to question whether or not it would become a white elephant.

Da Costa says the zone represents a "great investment opportunity" for motor manufacturers and suppliers, warehousing or production facilities".

The potential Coega holds for the motor industry will be high on the agenda of the 2004 Made In South Africa Automotive Conference taking place next month in Port Elizabeth Africa's largest vehicle assembly and component manufacturing hub.

"With efficient infrastructure in place, Coega could develop as the industry's essential export gateway," says organiser Chris Wright.

"Your country is ideally placed as a low-cost production centre for more than 30 other right-handdrive markets around the world."

Motor exports have boomed over the past few years.

The sector's contribution in 2001 comprised 12% of all of SA's total exports.

Last modified on Thursday, 26 June 2014 18:50

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