By – SAnews.gov.za
Pretoria – President Jacob Zuma says government is committed to ensuring ease of investment in the country by cutting red tape and by making South Africa a more business-friendly destination for investors.
“We are prioritising that process more this year,” said the President in written replies to Parliamentary questions published on 11 April, released in a statement by the President on Wednesday.
“We have held meetings with business with the common purpose of reigniting growth and also to promote the easing of red tape.
“Earlier this year, working groups were established between government and business to address these challenges and opportunities, under the leadership of the Minister of Finance, Mr Pravin Gordhan, and the President of Business Unity SA, Mr Jabu Mabuza,” he said.
President Zuma said the group reported at the last session between government, business and labour that the task team has focused on improving engagement and trust with economic stakeholders on key areas of interest, to identify blockages to production and employment.
He said the groups reported that it had looked at how to further improve the systems and capacity for assessing the impact on growth, investment and employment of proposed and existing regulations.
President Zuma said the group also reported that other matters include to reduce delays and unnecessary red tape around authorisations needed for investments, to work towards improving regulation, and to reduce the burden of importing core and critical skills needed for the economy.
“At an implementation level, the Department of Trade and Industry is tasked with the overall coordination on investment and has established a division, Investment South Africa as of 1 April 2016 to be the focal point for all investors,” he said.
One Stop Shop
At present, the President said, reducing red tape and unblocking opportunities are being facilitated and managed by Investment South Africa as a One Stop Shop.
He said the National One Stop Shop will be launched in quarter three of the current financial year. He said the One Stop Shop will focus on permits, licensing and registrations across government.
“We welcome the recent investments which have been announced in the country. These include the investment by Toyota for a new Toyota Hilux and Fortuner manufacturing plant in Prospecton, Durban.
“This was made possible through the support provided by the Department of Trade and Industry which has attracted investments of over R25 billion in the automotive industry in the past five years,” he said.
This investment, according to the President, will support more than 4 000 jobs with total employment in the plant already exceeding 8 000 jobs.
He said Toyota injected R6.1 billion into South Africa’s manufacturing industry and the country’s local vehicle production.
“BMW has also announced the construction of a R6 billion a new, state-of-the-art body shop. The expansion will enable BMW to produce and export the next generation of the BMW X3.
“This demonstrates that the Rosslyn Plant is highly competitive within the global BMW production network both in terms of cost of production and quality,” said the President.
Dursots & All Joy Tomato Processing Plant
In another investment, Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies recently launched a R100 million Dursots & All Joy Tomato Processing Plant in Modjadjiskloof near Tzaneen.
The President said Dursots has embraced supplier development as a mechanism to encourage 15 black emerging famers into the value chain.
To support the upgrade and expansion of the rail locomotive programme, President Zuma said Gibela Rail Transport consortium has commenced building a R1 billion factory at Dunnottar in Ekurhuleni.
He said the factory will be utilised to manufacture trains for PRASA.
Also, Aberdare Cables launched its new production line in Pietermaritzburg. The production line will produce cables for PRASA and Transnet locomotive build programme.
The Investments Inter-Ministerial Committee, which is chaired by the President, continues its work, supported by business, to remove obstacles to doing business in the country.
“South Africa remains an attractive investment destination and government is committed to improving our investment climate,” he said.