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UK Trade and Investment South Africa

The ports sector in South Africa is currently in need of modernisation and expansion as a result of increasing demand. The government is improving the infrastructure sector to help promote trade and economic development. The ports sector is a primary component of this.

Under the state-owned Transnet National Ports Authority, some of the opportunities of the ports sector are:

  • a new dugout port, planned in Durban South to be built over a 25-year period – Phase 1 is due for completion in 2022 and will cost £3.8 billion
  • as part of the Market Demand Strategy of Transnet, expansion plans are under way at the other seven commercial ports
  • expansion programme is expected to promote involvement of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs)

5.2 Infrastructure

UKTI is tracking high value and infrastructure opportunities worth £90 billion over the next 4 years. Further projects up to 2020 are under consideration worth £270 billion.

There are opportunities in the Infrastructure sector that cover:

  • power
  • water and sanitation
  • rail and ports
  • hospitals and healthcare facilities
  • schools and universities
  • low cost housing
  • government buildings
  • urban regeneration projects

5.3 Energy

South Africa is facing major energy constraints and is in the midst of a massive programme to upgrade and expand the country’s electricity infrastructure.

It has committed to a major Renewable Energy Programme in order to assist with the continued, uninterrupted supply of electricity to meet increasing demand. It is considering a major nuclear energy plan worth £80 billion.

Opportunities exist for UK suppliers, including:

  • innovative funding solutions
  • maintenance solutions
  • demand and supply solutions
  • skills transfer and capacitating proposals

South Africa has modest reserves of oil & gas, but major offshore and onshore deposits are believed to exist. The Western Cape province is positioning itself as a servicing and repair hub for the region.

Specific opportunities exist for UK companies in:

  • LNG
  • specialised engineering or consultancy services
  • servicing, repair & maintenance of oil rigs
  • hi-tech or specialised equipment
  • skills and education sector – artisan to skilled professionals
  • financial and legal services

5.4 Rail

South Africa is investing heavily in freight and passenger rail. The state-owned freight and logistics company, Transnet, has budgeted £14 billion for rail until 2019.

The Passenger Rail Agency (PRASA) is set to spend around £10 billion over the next 10 years to upgrade/expand rolling stock, commuter rail network and train stations.

5.5 Information and Communications Technology (ICT)

South Africa has a complex, developing economy with access to ICT and fiscal resources.

About two-thirds of South Africa’s ICT companies are located in Gauteng. The combined ICT market in South Africa is estimated to be worth £3.7 billion. According to Business Monitor International, spending on ICT is predicted to rise to £7.5 billion by 2016. This increase is faster than real GDP growth over that period.

Current opportunities include:

  • ICT in rural development
  • Smart Cities, with a focus on transport related ICT
  • ICT in education
  • Square Kilometre Array (SKA) radio project – construction starts in 2017

5.6 Healthcare

Healthcare in South Africa is characterised by a divide between an under-resourced public healthcare sector and well-developed private healthcare sector.

Some opportunities in the healthcare sector are:

  • medical devices and equipment
  • education and training
  • digital health
  • new build and refurbishment projects

5.7 Education

Education is the government’s single largest investment at around 20% of GDP. Despite this, poor schooling remains a weak link in the South African economy. The education system is not producing the skills needed in the labour market.

Opportunities exist for UK companies in the following areas:

  • basic English language tools
  • recognition of prior learning (RPL)
  • training for the oil and gas sector
  • ICT and mobile technology
  • assessment tools

5.8 Agribusiness

South Africa is a major producer of food stuffs and the value chain is extensive. South Africa produces large volumes of beef, chicken, pork and lamb. It is a major fruit and nut exporter. Grains are farmed extensively and the Western Cape produces large volumes of wine.

Potential opportunities for UK companies exist in:

  • animal breeding and genetics
  • technology to reduce water use
  • speciality fertilisers
  • bovine and porcine semen
  • plant sciences

5.9 Marine

South Africa looking to increase the economic use of its oceans and has set up the ‘Operation Phakisa’ initiative. There are critical strands in marine manufacturing, offshore oil and gas, aquaculture and fisheries. Saldanha Bay IDZ has been set up to increase the amount of offshore work that can be delivered from the Western Cape.

UK companies should engage with UKTI for opportunities in:

  • offshore oil and gas repairs/maintenance and logistics
  • advanced marine engineering equipment and design – civilian and military
  • electronic systems
  • yacht equipment and supplies
  • supply chain management

5.10 Environmental services and water

The renewable power market in South Africa is extensive, whether at government or individual level. There is a major central programme to build green energy infrastructure called the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP). A proposed carbon tax offers opportunities in energy efficiency and there is increasing demand for scarce water.

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Source: www.gov.uk
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