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Invest in our Ocean Economy
The Western Cape has a coastline of more than a 1000km. As a result, various direct and indirect investment opportunities are available to benefit from the activity created. In fact, the province has 3 international harbours namely the ports of Cape Town, Mossel Bay and Saldanha. Cape Town is South Africa’s principal port of export for fresh fruit and wool. Growing numbers of passenger cruise liners and ocean-going super yachts also visit the City, a popular tourism destination, primarily between November and April.
Saldanha Bay, on the west coast, is the largest and deepest natural port in the Southern hemisphere. It is here where government has established a special investment zone dedicated to the oil and gas industry. This initiative is guided at a local and national level to support investment, increase training needs in relevant maritime skills and offer incentives to facilitate and grow investment opportunities. The Mossgas project, owned by the state-owned company PetroSA, is located in close proximity to the Mossel Bay port.
Various oil and gas exploration opportunities are available for companies in the upstream oil industry. This includes large shale gas volumes in the Karoo region. Current investment opportunities exist in storage, the oil and gas services and manufacturing industries specifically aimed at servicing the booming African oil and gas industries.
Based on the tonnage transported to and from its ports, South Africa ranks among the world’s top 15 shipping nations. Approximately 96% of the country’s trade in tonnage, or around 80% in value terms, is seaborne.
The Western Cape is the production hub of the South African boat building industry and is home to the country’s largest luxury boat builder, Robertson and Caine. Approximately 68% of commercial boat yards are located in the Western Cape facilitating 87% of South African ship and boat exports. Although the majority of marine manufacturing operations are located in and around Cape Town, boat yards exist in St. Helena Bay, Saldanha Bay, Swellendam, George and Knysna. The Western Cape’s maritime companies employ around 3 200 people.
The Western Cape is ideal for large-scale commercial aquaculture production, with oysters, mussels, abalone, line fish and pelagic species already farmed. At present 85% of all South African sea based agricultural exports originate from the Western Cape and support a R6 billion industry. This sector is also supported through Project Phakisa at a national level.
Competitive advantages of the Oceans economy in the Western Cape
- Investment incentives through the Saldanha bay IDZ, the only sector-specific IDZ in South Africa
- Natural resources for aquaculture opportunities on the west coast.
- Notable market opportunities for businesses and investors in boat-building due to clustering advantages.
- Cape Town port is South Africa’s second largest container port.
- An ease of doing business as the oceans economy is a key priority through Phakisa.