Second investor signs up for Coega

The Coega Development Corporation has secured its second investment—a R1,6-billion stainless steel precision mill that is part of the offset from the multibillion-rand arms deal, the The Herald website reported on Wednesday.

Coega spokesperson Vuyelwa Qinga-Vika said she was “not in a position to divulge any more details” because of the company’s request for confidentiality until all agreements had been signed.

The project still needed the approval of its 26% partner, the Industrial Development Corporation, “but no obstacles are expected”.

The first phase of the investment would involve R640-million and the second R960-million.

The offset would come from German company MAN-Ferrostaal which is part of the German submarine consortium.

Qinga-Vika said the CDC had worked in close collaboration with the government and the investor to bring the steel mill project to finalisation.

“We have the raw materials, a strategically placed location and the newest deepwater port for an easy logistics chain and government is continually making the country one of the best locations in which to do business,” Qinga-Vika said.

“As a result more investors now have Coega on their radar screen when looking at locations for investments around the world.”

In another development, the Eastern Cape economic affairs department has announced that it has issued an amended record of decision following an environmental impact assessment, giving Canadian aluminium giant Alcan the green light to erect a smelter at Coega.

The steel mill investment, announced by trade and industry deputy director-general Lionel October at the weekend, follows a R200-million commitment by Belgian textile company Sander International.

Alcan now has “environmental authorisation” to proceed with the construction and operation of a primary aluminium smelter.

Qinga-Vika said that the CDC has said earlier that at least three investments in Coega would be announced this year.

She said the steel mill was the first investment in the Coega industrial development zone’s ferro-metals cluster—one of a series of clusters at Coega.

These included an integrated stainless steel complex, an aluminium smelter, two ferro-manganese plants, as well as ferro-nickel and ferro-chrome smelters. Smelters in the zone will be fed directly from the port and neighbouring storage area through closed conveyor systems.

Qinga-Vika said the deepwater port of Ngqura included a bulk terminal to handle the discharge of both liquid and solid feedstock.

There were also plans for a liquid petroleum gas-fired power station in the zone, as well as a peak power station.
- Sapa

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