News agency, Cape Town, South Africa
Monday July 22nd 2019

Firms show interest in Atlantis ‘green’ hub

Darling Wind Farm. Photo: Steve Kretzmann/WCN

Firms are beginning to show interest in the green technology manufacturing hub the City of Cape Town is trying to establish in Atlantis. Photo: Steve Kretzmann/WCN

The City of Cape Town’s attempts to create a green technology manufacturing hub in Atlantis is beginning to bear fruit with at least two “large companies” showing interest in establishing themselves in the area.

And employment opportunities are desperately needed in the area.

A recent Atlantis revitalisation framework document prepared by the Atlantis inter-governmental task team, stated that at the peak of the global and domestic economic meltdown, 10 factories closed down in Atlantis over a period of 18 months and one company had relocated to the City’s Central Business District (CBD). As a result about 600 jobs were lost in an area already wracked by poverty and unemployment.

Following the approval of a land release procedure by the council in December last year and subsequent adverts in the press calling for companies to apply for land, there had been 11 downloads of the land application documents on the city’s website, according to the City of Cape Town Executive Deputy Mayor Ian Nielson.

Nielson said two vacant portions of land, approximately 29ha and 38ha “respectively” within the existing Atlantis industrial area have been made available for manufacturers of green technology such as wind turbines and solar panels and associated products.

The land would be allocated within a short time frame and at “very competitive land prices” to interested applicants qualifying in terms of green technology criteria.

“There are two large companies interested and it is expected that smaller companies will be interested as the marketing of the concept makes an impact,” he said.

He said applicants would apply to purchase or lease their “preferred” portions of land designated for the establishment of the green technology manufacturing cluster in Atlantis and the applied portions would be allocated in proximity to each other in to promote cluster development.

Nielson said the city and the provincial government have already facilitated the initiation of environmental approvals to further expedite the ability of applicants to contract with the city and speed up bureaucratic processes before manufacturing could begin.

Wesgro CEO Nils Flaaten said the matter relating to interested “parties” seeking to grab the opportunity to open green technology manufacturing companies was subject to “non disclosure agreement” between his company and the parties involved and he thus could not discuss the matter in detail.

In December Flaaten told West Cape News that “the Western Cape was the first province to really grab hold of the opportunity to “grow a new sector”.

“No-one else has come out overtly and said they want to be a centre for green technology manufacture.” — Peter Luhanga



Tags: atlantis, green technology, Ian Neilson, manufacturing, Nils Flaaten, wesgro

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