SPECIAL FEATURE Making investment count Big companies are working together and Special Economic Zones are coming on stream to boost sustainable growth. The Marula mine produces tens of thousands of ounces of platinum and Implats is one of the biggest investors in the province. Credit: Implats One of the great puzzles of the early 21st century is “jobless growth”. For a country with large numbers of unemployed people who were discriminated against under the apartheid system, finding a way to enable economic growth that benefits a broader range of people is a priority. One of the ways that Limpopo is trying to promote jobs and economic progress is through industrial parks and Special Economic Zones (SEZs) where manufacturers and businesses are brought together to try to create an ecosystem that generates both employment and growth. Another way of promoting this goal is through a concerted and combined effort by the private sector, research institutions and government to ensure that major investments make a sustained impact on communities in which they occur. Limpopo is one of the three provinces in which the Impact Catalyst project is being executed. Impact Catalyst The goals of the Impact Catalyst are ambitious: no less than a reimagining of Corporate Social Investment in a way which brings business and society together. Impact Catalyst wants to bring the knowledge, expertise, networks and scale of the private sector to bear on health, education, how people earn a living, enterprise and social development. The approach is described on the initiative’s website: “A collective impact model is used to drive long-term initiatives that enables a shared vision, linked programmes, a common understanding of the challenges, co-investment of resources as well as public, private and social alignment.” The founders are Anglo American, the CSIR, Exxaro, World Vision South Africa and Zutari, an engineering consultancy. Several feasibility studies and pilot programmes are underway in Limpopo, as part of the Impact Catalyst’s efforts to stimulate economic development in the region. These LIMPOPO BUSINESS 2021/22 16
SPECIAL FEATURE include integrated game farming, agriculture, agro-processing and biofuels, waste recycling and community health. With mining playing the role of a foundational sector in the Limpopo economy, the Impact Catalyst is part of an attempt to help communities build up other sectors of the economy to take advantage of the opportunities related to mining. Other projects in the pipeline include an enterprise and supplier development programme, which aims to create small businesses that supply goods and services to mines and businesses and an integrative geo-spatial planning capability, which was developed by the CSIR and will be supported by Anglo American. The Mutale Agri-Industry Development project intends repurposing a dam built by mining company Exxaro for irrigation purposes. The Tshikondeni mine has closed but the dam is still an asset that could help to alleviate poverty through agricultural activity. The CSIR is bringing its expertise to bear in enhancing performance and reducing production loss through the use of lasers. Together with Anglo American and Exxaro, the project aims to repair components at a fraction of the cost of a new component. Investment promotion The Provincial Government of Limpopo has been encouraging investment in the province through a series of targeted conferences. The Northern site of the Musina-Makhado Special Economic Zone (MMSEZ) has already been the subject of several investment promotion initiatives and these have been successful in attracting investors to the zone. As of June 2021, the government approved a further three focussed efforts to be presented by the Department of Economic Development, Environment and Tourism (LEDET). These are: • Limpopo Mining Indaba. To strengthen the role of mines in the provincial economy, the role of mining in host communities and to promote social cohesion. • Limpopo Tourism Lekgotla. To create a platform to discuss recovery plans in the sector in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic, with the intention of laying a solid foundation for the Provincial Investment Conference. • A virtual Provincial Investment Conference, September 2021. In line with the SA Investment Conference hosted by President Cyril Ramaphosa, November 2020. To mobilise investments to expedite industrialisation in the province, reposition Limpopo favourably and take advantage of the Fourth Industrial Revolution to change the economic landscape of the province. Economic planning within the province takes place within the framework of the Limpopo Development Plan. Key elements of the Limpopo Development Plan are: industrialisation (beneficiation of mining and agricultural products and produce); mining (local suppliers, improved training and access to sector for entrepreneurs); infrastructure development; agro-processing; SMME promotion and ICT and the knowledge economy (establish a WAN footprint). Signing of the Impact Catalyst MOU. From left to right: Limpopo Premier Representative, MEC Thabo Mokone, Malcolm Boyd from World Vision, Mxolisi Mgojo (Exxaro Resources CEO), Andile Sangqu (Executive head, Anglo American South Africa) and Dr Thulani Dlamini, CSIR CEO. Image: Anglo American.
VENETIA UNDERGROUND PROJECT The fut