Saldanha Bay industrial hub getting into shipshape
The Saldanha Bay Industrial Development Zone (IDZ) is getting the building blocks in place to become a world-class off-shore and maritime hub.
An IDZ is a purpose-built industrial estate, linked to an international port or airport, created to boost trade and investment.
Kaashifa Beukes, the CEO of the Saldanha IDZ, says the hub is almost ready to re-open its doors with new maritime businesses.
Tenants in the special economic zone will include marine support service companies, boat builders, equipment manufacturers and repair businesses.
According to Beukes, the maritime economy has been a neglected sector in South Africa for many years.
She says the IDZ has secured investment deals from international investors from the UK, Germany and the United States as well as local companies.
The hub was declared a free port (or tax-free trade zone) this year which Beukes believes will attract more international markets.
Now that we have the special economic zone or IDZ working in tangent with the ports authority, if you think of the free port characteristic that we have now, that's really a globally competitive offering to the market.Kaashifa Beukes, CEO - Saldanha Industrial Development Zone
Now that we have the free port in place, we are going to operationalising that... and making it easier to do business in the port.Kaashifa Beukes, CEO - Saldanha Industrial Development Zone
For the past five or six years, it's been about getting the building blocks in place.Kaashifa Beukes, CEO - Saldanha Industrial Development Zone
That's the purpose of the IDZ. It's to make Saldanha and the value of the Port of Saldanha a hive of activity for that economy.Kaashifa Beukes, CEO - Saldanha Industrial Development Zone
She also spoke about the impact of the pending closure of ArcelorMittal’s Saldanha steel plant and what the future holds from affected workers.
Listen to the discussion on Lunch with Pippa Hudson:
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