South Africa ripe with opportunities for investors

Investors have once again affirmed South Africa as an attractive investment destination, as they have committed to investing in the country’s economy at the fourth South Africa Investment Conference (SAIC). With the many companies that made new investment commitments at this year’s morning session of the conference, which was held on Thursday, 24 March 2022, President Cyril Ramaphosa said they did so because they saw opportunity in the country.

“Despite the impact of the [COVID] pandemic, by the time of the third South Africa Investment Conference in 2020, we had raised a total of R774 billion in investment commitments,” President Ramaphosa said.

Addressing the SAIC at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg, he said government was two-thirds of the way to reaching its target.

The conference was part of government’s investment drive to attract R1.2 trillion over five years.
“Of the R774 billion committed, around R316 billion has so far been invested. Of the 152 investment pledges, 45 projects have been completed. A further 57 are under construction.

“Fifteen have been put on hold, in several cases due to the impact of the pandemic. The investments that have been realised since our first conference have created job opportunities, increased localisation and expanded local value chains,” the President said.

The investments have brought skills, technology and know-how into the economy.

“Whether it is a young person employed in a data centre, a worker at an auto plant, or a small business supplier to a renewable energy plant, these investments are changing people’s lives.

“The chance to earn a decent livelihood is fundamental to the dignity and worth of every human being, and it is these investments that are making the difference,” the President said.

At this year’s conference, many companies across various sectors came forward to make new investment commitments.

South Africa attracted commitments across a wide range of economic sectors, including energy; automotive; mining and mineral beneficiation; healthcare and the pharmaceutical sector; as well as the creative and fashion industries.

In addition, commitments were made in the development finance institutions sector; infrastructure, property and logistics sector; as well as the food and beverages industry.

The first set of commitments from this year’s conference are:

Investments in the energy sector:

  • Scatec pledged R16 billion for solar photovoltaic (PV) cells and energy storage projects in the Northern Cape.
  • Africa Rainbow Energy pledged R3 billion towards several renewable energy projects across South Africa for the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme.
  • Polorium pledged R30 million in the establishment of a production facility for lithium batteries in the Western Cape.
  • Bio2watt Purely Green Energy, a black industrialist company, invested R463 million in biogas facilities in Gauteng and the Western Cape.
  • Seraphim New Energy pledged R437 million for the production of PV cells and solar PV modules in the Special Economic Zone (SEZ) located in the Eastern Cape.

Investments in the automotive industry:

  • Ford pledged R16.4 billion towards the manufacturing of the next-generation ranger in Gauteng and Eastern Cape.
  • Africa Auto Group, a black industrialist company, pledged R550 million in a facility to supply automotive components in the Eastern Cape.
  • BMW pledged R800 million for automotive manufacturing in Gauteng.
  • Diamler Trucks & Buses Southern Africa pledged R190 million for new headquarters in Gauteng.
  • Formex Industries (Pty) Ltd pledged R102 million for the automotive components sector in the Eastern Cape.
  • Wheel Assemblers pledged R180 million for automotive tyre and rim assembly in the East London Industrial Development Zone.
  • Volkswagen pledged R350 million for automotive manufacturing in the Eastern Cape.

Investments in mining and mineral beneficiation:

  • African Rainbow Minerals pledged R11 billion for two new platinum mines in Limpopo.
  • Anglo American pledged R10 billion in investment as part of expanding its R100 billion investment in its local business, over a five-year period. The company has made significant progress towards converting its open cast Venetia diamond mine in Limpopo to underground mining.
  • Implats pledged R11.8 billion towards new expanded mining and processing in the platinum sector in Limpopo and Gauteng.
  • Isondo Precious Metals pledged R140 million for the production of components for fuel cells and electrolyzer in the OR Tambo SEZ in Gauteng.
  • Ivanhoe Mines pledged R2.8 billion for further expanding their mine in Limpopo.
  • Sedibelo Platinum pledged R9.4 billion in investment in platinum mining.
  • Renergent pledged R14 billion for the construction of a helium and liquid natural gas plant in the Free State.
  • Kropz pledged R497 million for a phosphate mine in the Western Cape.

Investments in the healthcare and pharmaceutical sector:

  • Afrigen has committed to invest R652 million towards a global mRNA technology transfer hub and training centre in the Western Cape.
  • Aspen Pharmacare pledged R500 million for vaccine manufacturing in the Eastern Cape.
  • Biovac pledged R2.5 billion for vaccine manufacturing capacity in the Western Cape.
  • BT Industrial Group is investing R226 million towards the production high-density polyethylene water pipe and diversifying into medical products in Gauteng.
  • Cipla pledged R150 million towards the pharmaceutical sector in KwaZulu-Natal.
  • IMT pledged R20 million for the localisation of syringe manufacturing in Gauteng.
  • NantSA pledged R3 billion towards vaccine and biologics production facilities in the Western Cape and Gauteng.
  • Pfizer pledged R255 million for vaccine manufacturing in the Western Cape.
  • Siemens pledged R484 million for educational software in the healthcare sector.

Investment in the creative industries and fashion:

  • Warner Media pledged R350 million for television series production in the Western Cape.
  • Netflix invested R929 million in new television and film production in Gauteng and Western Cape.
  • Video Vision Entertainment pledged R7.5 billion towards the eThekwini film studio in KwaZulu-Natal.
  • Compagne Mauricienne de Textile Ltée pledged R390 million towards a greenfield textile manufacturing plant in KwaZulu-Natal.
  • PFN pledged R650 million for a second non-woven textile line in the Western Cape.

Investments in infrastructure, property and logistics sector:

  • Cato Ridge Logistics Hub Consortium pledged R6.2 billion for dry port and railway infrastructure in KwaZulu-Natal.
  • DSV committed R2.2 billion towards the transport and logistics sector in Gauteng and the Western Cape.
  • Imperial invested R2.1 billion in the transport and logistics sector in South Africa.
  • Collins Residential pledged R2 billion towards mixed used property development in KwaZulu-Natal.
  • Waterfall Management Company has committed R18 billion to commercial and residential property and data warehouses in Gauteng.
  • Telkom invested R7 billion in telecommunications and broadband infrastructure across the country.

Investments in the food and beverages industry:

  • RCL Food committed R400 million towards expanding food and manufacturing capacity in Limpopo and Gauteng.
  • Lotus pledged R170 million towards the manufacturing of food and confectionary in the Western Cape.
  • ECP committed to investing R500 million in new Burger King outlets across the country.
  • Equator pledged R2 billion towards a brewery in Gauteng.
  • The South African Breweries committed R4.5 billion towards their brewery capacity in Gauteng and the Eastern Cape.

Investment in the development finance institutions sector:

  • The New Development Bank pledged R21.7 billion towards projects in the country.
  • The African Development Bank Group invested R42.5 billion towards projects in energy, transport, water, sanitation and financial services.
  • Meridiam committed R3.3 billion towards projects for just energy transition and mobile and social infrastructure across the country.
  • Norfuna pledged R2.25 billion towards projects in clean tech and agro processing.

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