The Deputy Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition, Ms Nomalungelo Gina says the R4.5 billion investment by Nyanza Light Metals and East China Engineering Science and Technology represents an opportunity that South Africa and native Africans can change the resource curse that Africa has been known for, which is being the net exporter of raw materials from gold, diamond, platinum, iron ore and many miners endowment, including titanium.
Gina was speaking at the Joint Venture signing ceremony held yesterday between the East China Engineering Science and Technology and OM Contract for Nyanza’s 80ktpa TiO2 Plant in South Africa.
According to Gina the minerals endowments the continent has, must be beneficiated in Africa and be exported as value added goods. She said Nyanza Light Metals represents that desirable direction of downstream beneficiation efforts.
“Nyanza Light Metals represents our pride as Africans. The journey they have travelled including the raising of capital to finance this titanium dioxide ligment manufacturing plant has been commendable. The completion of phase one has inspired confidence to all of us that, if all things were to be lined up well according to plans, you will definitely meet all the construction deadlines in terms of the project cycle,” said Gina.
She added that the project is critical for government because the spin-offs are far wider than corporate tax benefits. She said that of importance is the reality of permanent jobs, once the company operates in full, after construction is completed.
“We have been supporting Nyanza Light Metals ever since it pledged during the Presidential Investment Conference five years ago, and as the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition we have been accelerating with them in navigating the path, working with our Richards Bay Industrial Developemnt Zone and the KwaZulu- Natal government,” she said.
The Chief Executive Officer of Nyanza Light Metals, Mr Donovan Chimhandamba said the conclusion of the East China Engineering Science and Technology and OM Co agreements marks another critical milestone for Nyanza as they drive towards achieving financial close and commence with construction.
“Twelve years ago, Nyanza was just a pipe dream. But today, it employs a significant number of people. When the construction for the Nyanza’s 80ktpa TiO2 Plant in Richards Bay commences we will create more than 2 000 jobs and have 850 permanent jobs once operational.
Chimhandamba also said their operations will stimulate the local and national economy, triggering a lot of opportunities which include the construction of a rail link to, as well as siding and shunting lines into the Richards Bay Industrial Development Zone and the building of a solar park and energy system.
China Engineering Science and Technology is a leading Chinese EPC and OM contractor owned by the China Chemical Engineering Group Corporation.
Bongani Lukhele – Director: Media Relations
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Issued by: The Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (the dtic)