Special Economic Zones


Following the State of the Nation Address 2012, which announced R20 billion worth of incentives under Section 12(i) of the Income Tax Act for supporting new industrial projects and manufacturing, was the revision of Industrial Policy Action Plan (IPAP) 3 which identified Special Economic Zones (SEZ) as one of the six levers of economic change. The 2012 budget further allocated about R2.3 billion for industrial development and special economic zones.


eThekwini has enthusiastically embraced the SEZ plan and has since been in consultation with internal, national and provincial stakeholders in realising the development and implementation of this.


eThekwini Municipality has partnered with other spheres of government, in particular, the Department of Trade and Industry, the Department of Economic Development (DED), the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Economic Development and Tourism (KZNDEDT), and the KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Treasury in delivering on this programme through the establishment of the eThekwini SEZ Oversight Committee. The development of an SEZ is a medium to long term process and will require very structured coordination amongst stakeholders, hence the committee formation. We have so far finalised a substantive position paper on Special Economic Zones for eThekwini and will continue to interact with the relevant stakeholders towards the development of the SEZ.

 

Sector Policy and Research

Local government has taken a firm stance on developing priority sectors within the eThekwini Municipal Area. Currently, clusters have been formed in nine sectors, these being, the automotive, chemicals, clothing and textiles, materials recovery, furniture, fashion, metals and tooling, maritime, and arts and crafts.

The PSIR department is constantly undertaking research on key sectors as well as emerging sectors. Current research includes a focus on the ICT and Innovation sector. Policies on clusters and sector development are at the heart of this ongoing programme.
 
 
Investment Promotion Policy
 
This Investment Promotion Policy was developed in response to the growing importance of investment promotion as a driver for job creation and local government revenue within the eThekwini municipal region, where the overall goal is to increase the amount of domestic and foreign investment into the City of Durban.
 
The policy provides guidance to the activities of the City of Durban to ensure that investment promotion activities are undertaken in line with the City’s existing policies and areas of priority. The outcomes of this investment policy are to stimulate major national and international investment, enhance the competitive position of the City as an investment destination, and assist in the development of targeted sectors, locations and anchor projects.
 
It also presents a transparent framework to guide investment based on the size and socio-economic benefits of investment, targeted sectors, origin of investment, as well as the intended investment location. In addition, the Policy specifies investment promotion best practices, the mechanisms that can be utilised to promote investment and create a conducive environment for investment, as well as the task team required to accelerate investment. A set of objective verifiable indicators (OVIs) are presented and will enable monitoring of the progress of this policy.
 
The policy has undergone a peer review within the Policy Steering Committee and will be finalized by end January 2013, after which it will be presented to the Economic Development Planning Committee for official approval.