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Opportunity Issue 102

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Opportunity magazine is a niche business-to-business publication that explores various investment opportunities within Southern Africa’s economic sectors. The publication is endorsed by the South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SACCI).

A Smart City for a

A Smart City for a bright future A Smart City programme is envisaged for northern Limpopo Province, catalysed by the development of the multi-sector Musina-Makhado Special Economic Zone. Marc-Olivier Jodoin on Unsplash A new Smart City is taking shape in Limpopo Province. It is catalysed by the economic stimulus of the Musina- Makhado Special Economic Zone SOC. The new Smart City will integrate the towns of Musina and Makhado to become the pre-eminent trade and industrial centre of Southern Africa. The new Smart City will reignite the rich civilisational heritage of the Great Mapungubwe, Thulamela and Zimbabwe Kingdoms which at their height in 1000AD produced artifacts in gold and traded globally as far as Arabia, India and China. This region will once again rise and become a modernised industrial and global trade hub, building on its heritage and embracing the technology revolution. The geographic location of the Smart City in the northern part of South Africa bordering Zimbabwe and connecting into the rest of Africa gives it a critical comparative advantage, together with the natural endowments within the surrounds of Musina and Makhado which include high-value agricultural land, mineral resources and functional spatial relationships. If harnessed fully these will help to create a competitive regional economy for South Africa and the continent. _________________ A leading innovative, sustainable and inclusive high-tech Africa gateway city ________________ The advantage of the MMSEZ is that it is part of a national economic programme, located within the National Transformation Corridor that links Gauteng with its dynamic economy to the Beitbridge Border Post, one of the busiest ports in Africa. The goal of the Smart City is transformational. People’s needs and aspirations are at the centre of planning. The foundations are proper sanitation and waste management, 24-hour electricity and water supply, efficient mobility and public transport with a network of wellconnected roads and access to reliable and high-speed telecommunications. The circular and green economy based on reuse, recycle, share, low/zero-carbon footprint meets with the concept of the Smart City. The MMSEZ, working together with all three spheres of government and stakeholders, aims to develop the designated MMSEZ as a catalytic driver for a Smart City which is envisioned to be: A leading innovative, sustainable and inclusive high-tech Africa gateway city, driven by residents and visionary investment within a prosperous rural-urban integrated region and operating as a highly connected – freight/warehousing/ logistics/transport/retail/ manufacturing – industrial hub supporting the SEZ within a superefficient Gauteng-Limpopo-Zimbabwe economic corridor. 20 | www.opportunityonline.co.za

SPECIAL ECONOMIC ZONE Building the future together Message from Dr Mofasi Lekota, MMSEZ Board Chairperson As a long-term developmental approach, this will result in a transformed, competitive and spatially integrated regional economy and this will lead to the upliftment and well-being of people living in Vhembe, its neighbouring districts and the Province of Limpopo at large. The development of the Smart City starts with the Northern SEZ Site of the MMSEZ as a smart precinct, together with the upgrading of the Beitbridge border post and the town of Musina The Northern Site of the MMSEZ in Antonvilla will be the first smart precinct in the smart city that will improve the economy and create jobs. • A green industrial estate where one can live, work, play. • Investments into light manufacturing, retail, trade, freight and logistics warehousing, and agro-processing will be sought. • Innovation and incubation of new businesses to work on latest technology in electronics and other industries will be promoted. • The buildings and management of the precinct will use solar energy and conversion of waste to energy to ensure sustainability. 16 Antonvilla The core triangle of Beitbridge, Musina CBD and Antonvilla (Northern SEZ) will catalyse a region This core triangle will catalyse a region of of smartness smartness and and development development with upgrades with upgrades to roads and connectivity that will create the to roads and connectivity that will make the Musina-Makhado corridor. Musina-Makhado corridor MMSEZ SMART PRECINCT to become an integrated core of the new Smart City. This core triangle will catalyse a region of smartness and development with upgrades to roads and connectivity that will make the Musina- Makhado corridor the fastest-developing area in Limpopo, South Africa and Southern Africa. THE MODEL The Smart City Model will be implemented incrementally: • First step: integrate the Northern Site of the MMSEZ, the Beitbridge border and the Musina town to form the Smart City. • Second step: upgrade the N1 between Makhado and Beitbridge as part of the Smart City Corridor. • Third step: promote strategic developments along the N1 Musina-Makhado Smart City corridor. • Fourth step: renew and regenerate the towns of Musina and Makhado. • Fifth step: implement the corridors, ensuring connectivity to villages and promote agriculture and tourism, activating the Smart Region. • Parallel steps: development of roads for connectivity; work on telecommunication coverage; training of communities to MMSEZ SMART CITY MMSEZ SMART CITY use technology in partnership with the institutions of higher learning and through schools; building awareness on zero waste and low-carbon living. The work on the metallurgy complex at the Southern SEZ site will also be undertaken in parallel. A vibrant partnership with the University of Venda in co-creating the Smart City was launched on 16 September 2021, when the model was unveiled. The next step will be to develop the supply of skills needed for a Smart City and the ongoing operation of the SEZ. 6 The Board of Directors of Musina-Makhado Special Economic Zone (MMSEZ) recognises and appreciates the immensity of the challenges and attractive opportunities that come with the MMSEZ. We understand the mutual and interdependent relationship between a successful SEZ and our envisaged Smart City. We also acknowledge that the long-term nature of this project and its intergenerational characteristics require long-range planning and short-term execution. It requires human and capital resources that are committed in the long term and resilient enough to withstand the turbulences inherent in these types of projects. A vision of the emergence of a Smart City in the land between Musina and Makhado energises the directors and staff of the MMSEZ company to perform to the best of their abilities from day to day and from year to year. It is this vision that shines a light on our path to build a platform from which the next generation will derive optimal economic benefits. We continue the relentless pursuit of this vision, while keeping our promise to do all we can to maintain an environment that our children and their children will happily inherit from us. What will emerge between these two northern-most towns of Limpopo province is a Smart City that will offer endless opportunities for all our people. It is a Smart City that will offer business, job, skill development and entertainment opportunities for the people of the Vhembe region, Limpopo Province and the nation. This will be a Smart City we will all be proud of. Contact Details: Mr Livhuwani Muligwe: MMSEZ Smart City Model Project Manager Tel: +27 66 174 0798 | 93 Biccard Street, Polokwane, Limpopo Province, RSA Key: The Northern Site of the MMSEZ in Antonvilla will be the first smart precinct in the Smart City that will improve the economy and create jobs. A green industrial estate where one can live, work, play. Investments into light manufacturing, retail, trade, freight and logistics, warehousing and agro-processing will be sought. Innovation and incubation of new businesses to work on latest technology in electronics and other industries will be promoted. The buildings and management of the precinct will use solar energy and conversion of waste to energy to ensure sustainability. 1 Beitbridge border 2 Musina CBD 3 Antonvilla (Northern SEZ) www.opportunityonline.co.za | 21

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