Enhancing industrial development one Precinct at a time: the OR Tambo SEZ vision

BrandVoice Partner | Paid Program
Published 2 months ago
GIDZ 1

Developed and operated by the Gauteng IDZ Development Company, the OR Tambo International Airport Special Economic Zone is competitively located at or in proximity to OR Tambo International Airport.  In support of its competitive location, the value proposition of this SEZ is centred around the service offering of OR Tambo International. Recent statistics show that OR Tambo International continues to be a leading Airport in Africa, both in terms of passenger and cargo traffic. Specific to cargo, OR Tambo International is responsible for 84% of all air cargo traffic in Airport Company South Africa’s network. With a 95% recovery to pre-Covid air cargo throughput realised so far, it is envisaged that the Airport will continue to play a major role in the movement of air cargo.

Leveraging OR Tambo International’s Air Cargo Capabilities 

With its proximity to South Africa’s main air cargo centre, the OR Tambo SEZ focuses on the production and export of goods that typically move via air freight.  These include perishable products that are time or temperature sensitive such as fresh food products and medicines as well as high value commodities such as jewellery and diamonds or even fuel cell products. 

Taking the value chain approach 

Access to infrastructure that supports the movement of goods manufactured at the SEZ is one thing, ensuring that there is an operating value chain to support the sector identified for location at the SEZ is another.

In support of its vision to create a globally competitive SEZ, the Gauteng IDZ has taken a value chain approach to the OR Tambo SEZ’s development. To this end, the Gauteng IDZ works to understand the proposed industries or sectors – from the input to the end market, thereby ensuring that the necessary technical and business support are located within the SEZ’s environment. 

By doing so, nuances specific to a sector or industry are understood, ensuring that linkages central to an industry’s production processes are put in place for competitive manufacturing practices to thrive.

Tailor-made industry solutions 

Industry insight is central to the Gauteng IDZ’s sectoral work. By unpacking the requirements of each industry or sector to be located at its SEZ precincts, the Gauteng IDZ incorporates industry-specific requirements in the design and development of all its Precincts.

This is already underway at ORTIA Precinct 1, where industry requirements on the development of a safe, secure and globally competitive metals beneficiation park have been factored into the design and operations of the Jewellery Manufacturing Precinct, also known as the JMP.  

Positioned to become a leading diamond and jewellery manufacturing cluster in Africa, the JMP aims to leverage its proximity not just to OR Tambo International but to mineral producing countries located in Africa.  Through this, ease of access to raw mineral inputs mined in Africa and thereafter, beneficiated and exported to global markets through OR Tambo International is guaranteed.

The cluster approach to development of the OR Tambo SEZ is also guiding work in progress for ORTIA Precinct 2 as well as the Springs Precinct, both areas that, informed by their competitive locations are positioned for the production and export of perishable products (such as medicines and fresh food products), electronics, fuel cells, capital as well as mining component equipment respectively.  

Located in Kempton Park some 3kms away from OR Tambo International’s Air Cargo Precinct, ORTIA Precinct 2 is the perfect location for the manufacturing of perishable products exported through OR Tambo International. The Airport is within a 2-hour flight radius of the broader southern African region, covering a population of 142m inhabitants, ensuring ease of access to the SADC market.

Located some 30kms away from the Airport in Springs, Ekurhuleni, the Springs Precinct is competitively located next to a Platinum Refinery. This location makes it ideal for the production and export of Platinum beneficiated products such as fuel cells, platinum catalysts and platinum jewellery. It is also the ideal location for the production and export of mining and transport equipment components.  

Fostering cohesion and circular development practices

Each of the OR Tambo SEZ Precincts have been designed to foster cohesion in support of circular and sustainable development practices.  

Specific to ORTIA Precinct 1 where a Jewellery Manufacturing Precinct is under construction, stakeholders that support the value-addition and export of processed metals have been located at the Zone. These include the national regulatory agency responsible for overseeing licencing applications and approvals, a gold refinery with the capacity to refine both raw and second-hand gold, sector focused logistics companies that oversee the movement of goods to the airside as well as jewellery and diamond processing companies. Combined, the presence of all these role players ensures that the beneficiation of metals at the SEZ is undertaken in an efficient and circular manner – with reverse logistics in place to reduce, amongst others, production related costs and the risks associated with the movement of these precious goods to Airside.  

This approach will also be applied for both ORTIA Precinct 2 and the Springs Precinct, where the design of these industrial parks will factor in the requirements central to the effective establishment and operation of the sectors at the Zone.  

The design of the Precincts will also be underpinned by sustainable and circular development principles.  This is key, given the role that Special Economic Zones can play in the continent’s future where more and more, manufacturing practices and the impact they can have on the environment are key to investment decisions made.  This is also essential within South Africa’s present development landscape, where sustainable energy and water provisioning solutions are critical for effective and uninterrupted business operations.

Investment Opportunities available 

Manufacturing investment opportunities are available at both ORTIA Precinct 2 and the Springs Precinct.

Projected to have a Gross Lettable Area of approximately 250 000m², it is envisaged that ORTIA Precinct 2 will be the home of pharmaceutical and medical producing companies. It is also posed to be an expansion of the metals cluster development already underway at ORTIA Precinct 1. Furthermore, electronic component manufacturing as well as e-commerce solutions are being targeted for location at this Precinct.

On the other hand, the Springs Precinct has a projected Gross Lettable Area of approximately 63 000m². In support of its competitive location next to a major metal refinery, this Precinct is earmarked to become a major fuel cells and Platinum Group Metals localization hub. The location is also being promoted for capital and mining equipment component manufacturing.

Environmental authorisation for both Precincts has been secured and planning to unlock the bulk and enablement works is already underway, ensuring that both land parcels are available for market uptake.

Located in Kempton Park some 3kms away from OR Tambo International’s Air Cargo Precinct, ORTIA Precinct 2 is the perfect location for the manufacturing of perishable products exported through OR Tambo International. The Airport is within a 2-hour flight radius of the broader southern African region, covering a population of 142m inhabitants, ensuring ease of access to the SADC market.

Located some 30kms away from the Airport in Springs, Ekurhuleni, the Springs Precinct is competitively located next to a Platinum Refinery. This location makes it ideal for the production and export of Platinum beneficiated products such as fuel cells, platinum catalysts and platinum jewellery. It is also the ideal location for the production and export of mining and transport equipment components.

 

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