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Free State Business 2021

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The 2021 edition of Free State Business is the 11th issue of this successful publication that, since its launch, has established itself as the premier business and investment guide for the Free State. The Free State has varied investment and business opportunities and the Free State Development Corporation describes some of these in detail in these pages. Drilling for natural gas is a new phenomenon which may spark activity in other sectors and this journal notes significant new investments and projects in the chemicals and mining sectors. The official launch of the Maluti-A-Phofung Special Economic Zone (MAP SEZ) was a significant event for the economy of South Africa’s most centrally located province. Located on the strategically significant N3 highway that links the economic heartland of South Africa to the coast, the MAP SEZ has the potential to attract new investors and spark a revival in the manufacturing sector. In addition, overviews on each of the key economic sectors provide up-to-date information on trends in the mining and tourism sectors, for example. Regular information about the size and nature of each sector is also included.


CONTENTS CONTENTS Free State Business 2021 Edition Introduction Foreword 4 A unique guide to business and investment in the Free State. Special features A regional overview of the Free State 10 With acquisitions in the chemicals sector, drilling about to start for natural gas and the bedding down of a new Special Economic Zone, there are opportunities for growth in the Free State economy. Economic sectors Agriculture 36 An inland fishery has been launched. Mining 38 Feasibility studies are exploring new gold projects. Oil and gas 39 Logistics companies are signing up for gas. Manufacturing 40 The textile sector is recovering. Tourism 41 Culture and heritage are growth sectors. Education and training 42 Coding and AI are in the curriculum. Reference Free State provincial and local government 45 Index 48 ABOUT THE COVER: Sasolburg Operations is one of five operating hubs in Southern African. This photograph shows the Sasol One Site which was established in 1950, converted from coal gasification in 2004 and now uses more efficient natural gas in its production processes. Among the products produced on this site are ammonia, ammonium nitrate, catalyst, ethylene, mining chemicals, phenolics, solvents and wax. Image: Sasol. FREE STATE BUSINESS 2021 2

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