The Port Elizabeth (PE) Cold Storage plant located in the Coega Special Economic Zone (SEZ), one of the very first exports orientated investors to locate their facility at the SEZ is once again expanding its facility at Coega.
The investment worth ten million (R10 million) is the second expansion within a space of two (2) years, following the one hundred million (R100 million) investment by the company in 2017.
“We doubled our capacity of 7,500 pallets to around 15,000 pallets storage. The expansion complemented our state of the art modern storage facility and accommodated greater volumes for the increasing citrus production in the Eastern Cape,” says George Efstratiou, PE Cold Storages’ co-director.
The current project, set for completion this month, will see the company play a critical role in the refrigeration and short-term storage of citrus products before distribution to markets around the world. The new building will comprise of a new workshop, facilitate the servicing of forklifts and vehicles of the company.
“We are very excited with the project and the vast opportunities it brings for the company. Currently we have over a hundred (100) people employed at the PE Cold Storage facilities. As a result of the expansion we have managed to create an additional five (5) permanent jobs and a further twenty-five (25) construction jobs,” adds George.
Highlighting the importance of locating in an enabling environment, George said, “the Coega SEZ has been the ideal investment destination for our company. I would definitely encourage more investors to come and invest at Coega due to the clean and secure environment as well as the good services and facilities provided and being situated near the Port of Ngqura.” Concluded George.
These sentiments supports the recent independent study conducted on the impact of the Coega in the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality and Eastern Cape. For example, over 80% of the companies that have invested in the Coega SEZ have seen an increase in their profits since starting operations in the zone, these include Coega Dairy and PE Cold Storage, among others with the benefits felt throughout the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro and the rest of the province, according to an independent research conducted by Muffin Consulting.
In addition, eighty five percent (85%) of investors have increased their workforce, sixty two percent (62%) have expanded their factories, more than ninety percent (90%) described the Coega SEZ and its Logistics Park in Uitenhage as the ideal location for small and big industries, private sector investment accounts for approximately seventy percent (70%) of the total investment value at Coega, over seventy eight percent (78%) of suppliers to investors are local.
Even the Captains of South African industry agree by awarding the Coega SEZ a string of prestigious awards, among others: Top Employer in SA – Public Sector, 2030 Vision – Infrastructure Development, IDC Job creation and Best Provider of Service to Exporters, Best International Trade Marketing – South Africa, BBQ – Kaya FM Best Transformation Award, Top Performing Public Service Company, Best Established Black Business Award, Top 50 companies in the Nelson Mandela Bay (NMB)
The CDC will continue to be at the forefront of socio-economic development by creating jobs, providing training and skills development, and supporting Small and Medium Enterprises in the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan Municipality. We look forward to the completion of the BAIC project in the second quarter of 2018.