In a venture between the Gauteng government and the private sector, the province now has an R800-million Automotive Supplier Park to provide shared infrastructure for small component manufacturers.

In a venture between the Gauteng government and the private sector, the province now has an R800-million Automotive Supplier Park to provide shared infrastructure for small component manufacturers.

Gauteng premier Mbhazima Shilowa said on Thursday that the Automotive Supplier Park in Rosslyn, Pretoria, demonstrated that targeted intervention by the government in public-private partnerships could be successful.

Shilowa was speaking at the official opening of the park that has been developed with the part-funding of Blue IQ, the development arm of the Gauteng finance and economic affairs department.

The park would supply Ford, BMW, Fiat and Nissan’s Gauteng plants with components. The park is aimed at creating sustainable economic growth in the local automotive industry, by grouping different technologies, suppliers and service providers for various customers.

The park’s development is yet another show of investor confidence in the South African manufacturing sector. Vehicle manufacturers have already spent R3,57 billion in the past year on capital expenditure compared with the R2,32 billion in the previous year.

Automotive Supplier Park MD Jochen Freese said that seven companies had already committed themselves to moving into the park, while a further two had recently agreed to occupancy in the park.

Speaking at the official opening, Deborah Coleman, the group managing director and chief executive of the Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa, said the
Automotive Supplier Park was expected to significantly contribute to the long-term viability of the local automotive industry.

"In an industry of excess capacity, our challenge is to follow global trends and continue to develop initiatives such as this," she said.

Original article from Car