East London IDZ gears up for investment opportunities
The East London Industrial Development Zone (IDZ) is laying the groundwork for increased automotive investments, with multi-million rand expansion due to be completed in the course of 2012.
The automotive industry is one of the main arteries of local economic development in the Eastern Cape, and the East London IDZ has attracted major players in the industry.
One of the IDZ's main automotive investors, Mercedes-Benz South Africa has announced plans to produce its new generation of C-Class (W205) at its East London plant, a move that will inject billions into the local economy through the direct investment and spin offs, says East London IDZ chief executive Simphiwe Kondlo.
"Currently, Mercedes-Benz's parent company Daimler AG, is preparing to inject a further R2.5 billion into its East London manufacturing plant, following a decision to produce the next-generation C-Class (W205) model in South Africa, alongside sister plants in Germany, the US and China."
And while the first W205 is not due to roll off the assembly line until 2014, the IDZ is already hard at work preparing for the feeder ramifications of this new investment.
"To best prepare for and sustain these opportunities, and to stimulate future automotive developments, the IDZ has authorized a pre-feasibility study to look into ways to both enhance and refine the Multi-Model Original Equipment Manufacturing (MMOEM) model." says Kondlo.
The automotive industry remains a crucial partner with multiple cross-cutting benefits measurable in both direct and downstream terms. The Eastern Cape certainly distinguished itself in this realm - much of the innovations in the automotive sector have been both cutting-edge and trend-setting.
"Our partnership with MBSA has been hugely beneficial for the region, and the country as a whole, and as we head into a new C-Class production era, this partnership will continue to grow with exponential benefits," Kondlo adds.
"Overall, the success we have achieved in our automotive supplier park goes to the heart of what the IDZ priorities in its value proposition."
The suppliers located in the park are producing world-standard products and components which are globally competitive. "Every Mercedes C and E-Class unit rolling off the world's assembly lines sports a component manufactured right here in our zone by Foxtec-Ikhwezi.
Article Tags: East London Industrial Development Zone | Eastern Cape | Mercedes-Benz South Africa | C-Class (W205) | East London | Simphiwe Kondlo | Daimler AG | South Africa | Germany | US | China | Multi-Model Original Equipment Manufacturing | Foxtec-Ikhwezi |