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Economic Development

23 September 2020 Media Release: Executive Mayor shares Tourism highlights and concerns with National Parliament Committee

Media Release: Executive Mayor shares Tourism highlights and concerns with National Parliament Committee

For immediate release
23 September 2020

One of the main sectors of the National Economy is Tourism, this sector was hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. Subsequently, Executive Mayors were tasked to present their COVID-19 Policy Responses relating to the Tourism Sector to National Parliament. This virtual engagement was hosted by the Select Committee on Trade and Industry, Economic Development, Tourism, Employment and Labour, on behalf of Parliament.

Each Executive Mayor’s presentation was approximately 10 minutes long and focused on the following:

  • Financing and concessions district municipalities offer to Tourism SMMEs, including cooperatives;
  • Non-Financial Development Programmes;
  • Partnership initiatives with other spheres of government including other development institutions;
  • Donor funding to support Tourism SMMEs and Cooperatives;
  • Partnership Initiatives established with private sector including civil society and institutions of higher learning;
  • Policy response initiated in response of COVID-19;
  • Action Plans to reset the Tourism Industry post COVID-19; and
  • The Way-forward/Policy Recommendations.

During his presentation on behalf of the Garden Route district, Executive Mayor of Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM), Alderman Memory Booysen, gave a concise overview of the district and its diverse characteristics relating to the Tourism industry which is a coastal, inland and rural region. He further elaborated: “We are home to a port in Mossel Bay which is under-utilised. The port requires official port-of-entry status, as well as expansion. The district also has a regional airport in George, which is currently pursuing international status. If this is approved it will lead to its expansion, especially with the recent oil and gas discovery in Mossel Bay. He furthermore referred to the quality of the beaches within the district, saying that most of the coastal municipalities boast with pristine beaches that have blue flag status. Also, with the region that is very well known for tourism events and taking into consideration all these factors, he said that the Garden Route is the preferred Tourism destination.

Coastal activities – Plettenberg Bay area.

When referring to GRDM earmarked as one of the “district development model” municipalities, Mayor Booysen emphasised that the GRDM looks forward to building partnerships with other spheres of Government, including the sharing of resources and intellectual property for this model to work.

He furthermore mentioned the District’s relationships with stakeholders, referring to the engagement platform with the Premier of the Western Cape and said: “The Premier provides access to all five district mayors to participate in the Extended Cabinet meeting. These meetings are also represented by cluster leaders, such as Safety, Post-Covid-19 Economic Recovery, Tourism etc., to keep all municipalities aligned with the vision of the Western Cape Provincial Government.

Alderman Booysen raised his concerns regarding the district’s support to businesses. With regard to Small, Medium, Macro Enterprises (SMMEs).  He further elaborated that the cost-containment regulations prohibit the municipality from providing the best possible support to SMMEs, as well as processes that are delayed as a result of red tape. “Some processes have to be directed to other spheres of Governments for their approvals or to be concluded,” he emphasised. With reference to support programmes for spaza shops and general dealers, Alderman Booysen said that GRDM have been working with the banks (Nedbank, Standard Bank) and SEDA for the successful roll-out of this programme in the district. Support with regards to items and equipment is also provided to SMME’s to assist them in keeping their businesses open and expanding it.

Alderman Booysen made mention of a Webishop that was held in collaboration with all local municipalities on 12 August 2020. This WebiShop aimed to address several topics relevant to re-imagining the Garden Route in an innovative and creative way post the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdown period. It also provided a platform for representatives from various think tanks, based locally and internationally, to share how they do things differently in a streamlined way to enable a “next” normal. Presenters logged in from as far as the United Kingdom and Finland to share their ideas.

The themes and topics discussed provided a perfect baseline from which to begin with a process of re-imagining the Garden Route. He said:  “More sector specific workshops are envisaged to take place between September and October 2020 and by the end of October, a final economic recovery plan would be ready as a result of these engagements,” Mayor Booysen added. Furthermore, a memorandum of understanding with tertiary institutions in the region is in place to allow these institutions to assist the Garden Route with the turnaround of the economy.

GRDM furthermore embarked on many other campaigns, such as the launching of the Business support campaign. To assist businesses to recover, remain open and keep their current employees post-COVID-19.

September is also Tourism month, with a specific focus on boosting tourism and rural development. These role players are critical and play a major role towards the development of rural communities through measures that could alleviate poverty, create jobs and stimulate the economy.  The impact of COVID-19 on the Tourism sector was devastating, causing most businesses not to operate for months. This resulted in many communities to losing their income streams.

Garden Routers were invited to participate in a campaign which aimed to boost the visibility of small businesses on social media. This could be done by posting a positive review of a business you often support to your personal profile on social media using the hashtags (#gardenrouteandme and #myfavouritebusiness), Mayor Booysen explained.

As COVID-19 was the key element of the presentation, Mayor Booysen further spoke about how GRDM is dealing with COVID-19 through various partnerships. He elaborated that safety kits and masks were distributed in collaboration with local municipalities and the Department Economic Development and Tourism to SMME’s in hotspot areas, to ensure client and employee safety and that the district made provision for isolation facilities in the areas of Mossel Bay to accommodate more than 200 beds. GRDM also made two of its resorts available in preparation of any eventuality that might occur in relation to COVID-19.  Due to partnerships with clusters and discussions with the business chambers in the region, Mayor Booysen highlighted and said that these chambers did surveys regarding the impact of the COVID-19 within various sectors such as construction, tourism etc. He said: “These Chambers came back with reports that indicated that the district have to go into overdrive for the economy to be revived”.

The Garden Route is home to many world-class golf courses, Mayor Booysen confirmed that all these golf courses qualify to be part of the world calendar. Adding to this he said:  “Mr Ernie Els who is a world renowned golf champion, engaged with GRDM regarding a plan to attract golfers and the golf community around the world to the district through the hosting of a golf tournament. “However, as District Municipality we are still constrained with the cost containment regulations”.

All inputs made by the Executive Mayors will be compiled into a report in preparation of recommendations that will be presented to the National Council of Provinces for consideration.


14 September 2020 Media Release: Award-winning Cinematographer WIlliam Collinson’s quirky new film ‘Mr Johnson’ starts its festival journey at GRIFF

Media Release: Award-winning Cinematographer William Collinson’s quirky new film ‘Mr Johnson’ starts its festival journey at GRIFF

For Immediate Rlease
14 September 2020

Director and award-winning cinematographer, William Collinson (Double Echo, Last Broken Darkness), offers a new take on ageism in his latest film, Mr Johnson.  The film will have its world premiere at this year’s Garden Route International Film Festival (21 September – 11 October 2020).

When David Johnson awakes from a 47-year coma at the age of 73, he has a hard time dealing with his aged body and the fact that he has missed out on more than half his life.  As he slowly steps into this strange new world, his youthful exuberance is undimmed and, with a little prodding, he tackles life and love with the energy and passion of a man half his age.  However, like many other people of his age, he also wrestles with issues of loneliness and alienation.

“The film has some interesting twists and despite the fact that it is a drama, the main character is very quirky and this adds a lot of comedy to the story. Also, although in many ways, loneliness is a theme, Mr Johnson finds company in unique and strange places”, says Collinson. “There are few films that deal with ageism and, though shown only in subtle ways, Mr Johnson highlights how some old people become invisible in society.”

Collinson has earned his place as one of South Africa’s most sought-after young cinematographers and has lensed some of the most critically acclaimed films of the past few years.  His work on the soapie, Skeem Saam and the feature films Die Ballade van Robbie de Wee and Skemerson were all nominated for Best Cinematography at the South African Film and Television Awards (SAFTAs).  He received Best Cinematography Award nominations at the Kyknet Silwerskerm Film Festival for lensing the Afrikaans feature films, Seun and Dis Koue Kos, Skat.

In 2017, Collinson received Best Cinematography for a Feature Film at the South African Society of Cinematographers (SASC) Visible Spectrum Awards, for Last Broken Darkness. He is also the recipient of a Cannes Lion for his Wimpy Braille Burger video.

The film stars Paul Slabolepszy (Apprenticeship of a Mahatma, Saturday Night at the Palace) and Jana Cilliers (Die Boekklub, Die Leeftyd van Orgidee), with Frank Rautenbach (The Bang Bang Club), Sisanda Henna (Griekwastad), Graham Hopkins (Eye in the Sky), Jailoshini Naidoo (Keeping Up with the Kandasamys), Carla Classen (Stroomop), Drikus Volschenk (Dis Ek, Anna), Antony Coleman (Blood Diamond), Heike Brunner (Knysna), Clayton Boyd (The Entity), Marinus Gubitz (Onortodoks), and Mila Guy (Wonderlus).

Mr Johnson was shot on location in Johannesburg and was produced by Azania Productions, the team behind the box office hit Broken Promises Forever and the recent sleeper hit Blessers.

The film was made with the support of the Department of Trade and Industry, National Film and Video Foundation and Indigenous Film Distribution.

Mr Johnson is slated for release in 2021.

View Trailer:

Azania Productions:

Media Queries

david alex wilson

Mad Moth Communications

Cell: +27 83 629 2587


Media Release: Implementing the Hotspot Strategy to ensure safer workplaces



Date: 28 May 2020

Release: immediately

Implementing the Hotspot Strategy to ensure safer workplaces

On Tuesday (26 May 2020) I visited businesses in Dunoon, one of the Covid-19 hotspots in the Western Cape, to see how these businesses were implementing the necessary safety measures to stop the spread of Covid-19 and hear from them the challenges they face in ensuring customers maintain these safety measures. [Watch video of Minister’s visit to Dunoon]

This visit was part of the Department of Economic Development and Tourism’s operational plan to support the Western Cape government’s targeted Hotspot Strategy which focuses the entire provincial government’s impact on geographical areas where the virus is spreading, in order to slow it down and protect vulnerable people.

The department’s role in the Hotspot Strategy is specifically to assist businesses in slowing the spread of Covid-19 in the workplace, and to ensure economic recovery in the hotspot areas.

In addition to the work already done to support businesses in the Western Cape since the start of the Covid-19 crisis, we will also do the following to slow the spread of Covid-19 in the workplace in hotspot areas:

  • Provide businesses in hotspot areas, especially those that are high-risk, with health guidelines and materials that display information on safety measures in the workplace,
  • Monitor the compliance of businesses in implementing safety measures in the hotspot areas through reporting mechanisms that allow the public to report non-compliance such as an online form,
  • Assist businesses to access the necessary Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) by connecting them with suppliers through our PPE marketplace, and
  • Identify and resolve systemic issues making it a challenge for businesses to implement the necessary safety measures to stop the spread of Covid-19.

As part of our economic recovery plan for the hotspots, we will also be zoning in on businesses in these areas to ensure they access the support we’ve put in place to adapt and survive during this crisis such as:

  • our SupportFinder tool which helps businesses navigate and apply for the available financial relief packages,
  • our Jump for entrepreneurs smartphone app which provides valuable advice, networks and tools for those who run a business, or who wish to start a business,
  • our Tech Volunteers Programme which connects businesses who want to become more digital with industry experts for free two-hour advisory consultations, and
  • our #GoDigitalWC webinars which brings leading experts in digital technology and business transformation to present ideas and advice for SMMEs on how they can adapt and innovate during Covid-19.

The more businesses that are able to operate safely during the Alert Levels, the sooner we can get people working again, and the sooner we will move towards an economic recovery in the Western Cape.

To avoid a return to tighter restrictions it is imperative that every employer and employee in a business that is operating now, or which opens under the new alert levels, plays by the rules, and implements the necessary health and safety measures as instructed by national government to avoid further negative impacts on their respective sector.

Businesses can view the guidelines and resources developed by the Department of Health to stop the spread of Covid-19 in the workplace here:

Some of the key safety measures that we’re asking all businesses to implement include the following:

  • Develop a workplace safety plan before they re-open and implement any necessary changes to the workplace in advance of re-opening
  • Include details in the safety plan on how these businesses will implement hygiene and social distancing measures; how they will screen employees on arrival each day, how they will assist employees to quarantine or isolate, and how they will assist with contact tracing if employees test positive.
  • Identify and explore ways of protecting employees that are at risk, such as those who are over 60 years and / or who suffer from underlying conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease and cancer, either by enabling them to work from home where possible, changing the nature of their work, isolating their area of work or placing them on paid special leave if the other options are unavailable
  • Consider allowing all employees who can work from home to do so
  • Implement staggered and non-interacting shift work, and / or divide teams into smaller units to reduce the spread of infections and to minimise impacts on business operations should infections occur
  • Stagger working hours for employees and provide transport for employees where possible to help reduce congestion on public transport and reduce exposure to infection of employees. Where workers are using public transport, advise and encourage safe practices for using public transport
  • Spread out and closely monitor all communal break areas such as canteens and smoke break areas to ensure maintenance of safe practices.
  • Get employees to share their knowledge with their families and friends and encourage good practices outside of the workplace.

For assistance in understanding the regulations, guidance on workplace safety or help navigating the financial relief packages email us at

Notes for media: 

Media Queries:

Francine Higham

Spokesperson for the Provincial Minister of Finance and Economic Opportunities

(Responsible for the Provincial Treasury and the Department of Economic Development and Tourism)

Cell: 071 087 5150 / Email:

Garden Route Business Impact and Continuity Survey March 2020

Recently our lives and specifically our businesses have been affected and disrupted by droughts, crime, energy issues / load shedding and now the Corona COVID -19 virus.

We wish to gather information from you as business owners and leaders as to the impact the disruptions are having on your business. Hence the survey is designed to gather a high-level insight into the impact on businesses and measures taken to ensure sustainable business operations. Read more…

Please click on the link below to complete the survey.

The survey consists of 12 questions and should not take you more than 10 minutes to complete.

Public Notice: Proposed Long-Term Lease of a Portion of Erf 419 Mossel Bay to Ikusasa Processing Engineer

Public Notice: Proposed Long-Term Lease of a Portion of Erf 419 Mossel Bay to Ikusasa Processing Engineer

Notice 59/2019

Notice is hereby given in terms of the Local Government: Municipal Finance Management Act (No 56 of 2003), read with the Municipal Asset Transfer Regulations (R878 of 2008), the Promotion of Administrative Justice Act (No 3 of 2000), as well as the Local Government: Municipal Systems Act (No. 32 of 2000), that the Council of the Garden Route District Municipality, in terms of Resolution H.4 intends to enter into a long-term lease agreement (50 years) with Ikusasa Processing Engineering Consultants, to construct a chemical manufacturing plant on a portion of erf 419, Mossel Bay. This plant, as proposed, will have the capabilities to manufacture products for various sectors such as Agriculture, Water Treatment, Textiles and Roads, with the ability to expand its product range in the future. The Applicant will also be responsible for all the costs, which includes the sub-division costs of the property. The property is, in terms of the provisions of section 14 of the Local Government: Municipal Finance Management Act, 2003 (Act 56 of 2003), not required for the purposes of providing minimum basic municipal services.

Any comments and/or objections to the proposed long-term lease, with your reasons for such objection(s), must be submitted in writing and addressed to: The Municipal Manager, Garden Route District Municipality, P O Box 12, George, 6530, by no later than Friday, 14 June 2019.  Any comments and/or objections which are received after the abovementioned closing date, will not be taken into consideration.

Any enquiries may be directed to Mr L Menze, Planning & Economic Development, at telephone number (044) 803 1398 or per email to This notice is also available on the website of the Municipality at

M G Stratu
Municipal Manager
Garden Route District Municipality

Public Notice: Proposed Long-Term lease of a Portion of Farm 419 Mossel Bay Landfill Site to Moumakoe Energy (Pty) Ltd

Public Notice: Proposed Long-Term lease of a Portion of Farm 419 Mossel Bay Landfill Site to Moumakoe Energy (Pty) Ltd

Notice 58/2019

Notice is hereby given in terms of the Local Government: Municipal Finance Management Act, (No 56 of 2003) read with the Asset Transfer Regulations, R878 of 2008, the Promotion of Administrative Justice Act, as well as the Local Government: Municipal Systems Act (No.32 of 2000), that the Council of Garden Route District Municipality in terms of Resolution H.2 intends to enter into a long term lease agreement (50 years) with Moumakoe Energy (Pty) Ltd, to construct a lubricant plant and petroleum storage tanks facilities on a portion of erf 419, Mossel Bay.

The lease will attract a multi-million rand investment into the local economy. It is envisaged that the tanks will be integrated into the existing system (pipes) that are used by other petrochemical plants in the region. The property is, in terms of the provisions of Section 14 of the Local Government: Municipal Finance Management Act, 2003 (Act 56 of 2003) not required for the purposes of providing minimum basic municipal services.

Any comments and/or objections to the proposed long-term lease, with your reasons for such objection(s), must be submitted in writing and addressed to: The Municipal Manager, Garden Route District Municipality, P O Box 12, George, 6530, by no later than Friday, 14 June 2019.

Any comments and/or objections which are received after the abovementioned closing date, will not be taken into consideration. Any enquiries may be directed to Mr L. Menze, Planning & Economic Development, at telephone number (044) 803 1398 or email This notice is also available on the website of the Municipality at

In terms of Section 21(4) of the Local Government: Municipal Systems Act, notice is hereby given that people who cannot write may approach the Property Management Department during office hours, where a staff member will assist them to submit their comments or objections.

MG Stratu
Municipal Manager
Garden Route District Municipality

Garden Route Inter-governmental Agriculture Workshop held to strengthen agriculture in the district

The Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM), in collaboration with the Western Cape Department of Agriculture and the South Cape Economic Partnership (SCEP), on 9 April 2019, held a Garden Route District Inter-governmental Agriculture Workshop.

The engagement was held at the Outeniqua Experimental Farm in George and representatives from government departments and municipalities in the Garden Route district attended the event.

Representatives from municipalities in the Garden Route district, together with Mr Paul Hoffman, Programme Manager of the South Cape Economic Partnership (back, right), who participated in the workshop.

In setting the scene, Ms Natalie Raubenheimer, Senior Local Economic Officer at the GRDM, shared the municipality’s perspective in terms of agriculture development in the district.  Raubenheimer also shared the objective of the workshop, which is to embark on a district process of effective stakeholder collaboration, including knowledge and resource sharing, which will ultimately lead to “higher productivity on farms, orient farming activities commercially, and strengthen the link between farming and other sectors of the district economy” – all these factors will be of benefit to emerging farmers.

Representatives from the Government Departments who participated in the Agriculture Workshop.

Mr Clyde Lamberts, Deputy Director for Farmer Support and Development at the Western Cape Department of Agriculture’s in the Garden Route, shared the Department’s regional approach towards the development of the agriculture sector. Lamberts said:  “If we share our funds and expertise, we will make a success of agriculture in the Southern Cape, as the area has many opportunities to offer”. When referring to challenges faced by the Karoo, he said:  “Fifty (50) percent of the national veld which is part of an extensive sheep production hub, got destroyed due to the prolonged recent drought, of which many parts do not have the potential to recover in the short term.  He added: “As a team, we can make a change in our community now, but we need to find synergy, by identifying good products that are sustainable and resilient to grow”.

During the plenary session, municipal representatives identified the various resources available in their respective municipal areas and the discussions led to the topic on how these resources can be streamlined for this regional approach to take effect.  Furthermore, government representatives shared and elaborated on their respective organisations’ involvement and contribution towards the development of the regional agricultural sector in the district.  Representing the Small Enterprise Development Agency (SEDA), Ms Lianda Landman during the plenary session said, that the best way in which SEDA can provide support to Agriculture in the Garden Route district is through Agro-processing. She furthermore highlighted that the organisation can also assist with the application of funding for people involved in agro-processing and/or exports, to attend various international agro-processing shows/exhibitions and that SEDA will assist with these applications to the National Department of Trade and Industry.

Mr Richard Dyantyi, Expanded Public Works Manager at GRDM, touched on the issue of the clearing of alien invasive species and shared the municipality’s challenges in this respect in the Garden Route. When mentioning these challenges, especially with regards to properties of Council, he said:  “Access to these properties is a challenge, as Council properties are based within the centre of other stakeholders’ properties. The municipality needs to get the buy-in from these land owners to adhere to the National Environment Management Biodiversity Act, Section 76. GRDM will share the draft plan with the stakeholders for their comments and that the Breede Gouritz Catchment Management Agency (BGCMA) will assist GRDM to register for water rights of Council properties.

In realising that this workshop is a stepping stone towards a bigger process that needs to be accessed, many thought that commercial farmers and other essential government departments, should be included in future discussions of this nature. The need for all municipalities to do more in-depth analysis of their available land was also identified. Some officials that were present recalled the words of Executive Mayor of GRDM, Cllr Memory Booysen, when he, at more than one occasion, last year, said:  “We do have properties, but we do request people to come and engage with the District Municipality”.

Ms Melanie Wilson, Manager for Economic Development and Tourism summarised the discussions of the day and Executive Manager for Economic Development and Planning, Mr Lusanda Menze, formally thanked Mr Paul Hoffman from South Cape Economic Partnership for steering sound discussions throughout the session, as well as the colleagues from B-municipalities and government departments who took part and engaged in the discussions as key stakeholders of the agricultural sector.

MOU between Garden Route DM and George Airport to boost the economy

28 September 2018 – Garden Route District Municipality (Garden Route DM) and George Airport signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signifying a commitment to enhance connectivity between national gateways, cities and surrounding areas through a 3-phase collaborative project.

After signing the MOU, Mr Charles Shilowa, Airports Company South Africa’s (ACSA) Group Executive  Business Development, said: “A journey of a thousand miles starts with one step. There have been ongoing discussions between the ACSA team and Garden Route DM about access to the George Airport, which serves as a gateway to this district. The Airport is strategically positioned for economic activity, and this is one of the reasons why a partnership between ACSA and Garden Route DM – will ensure that the aspirations stimulating economic growth in the region are realised. This will be achieved as we continue to work together”.

The first phase commenced when the MOU was signed by (fltr), ACSA Group Executive: Business Development, Mr Charles Shilowa; Garden Route DM Municipal Manager, Mr Monde Stratu; George Airport Manager, Ms Brenda Vorster and Garden Route DM Executive Mayor, Cllr Memory Booysen.

The three phases will involve the following:

Phase 1

  • Scoping of key new or existing air routes on a regional, national and intercontinental level, which will see trade and tourism enhanced; and
  • A project team will be appointed to compile a list of business cases that focus on target markets and prospective markets that could be reached by a non-stop air service.

Phase 2

  • The analysis of potential markets;
  • The identification of potential airline partners;
  • Research and development for the airlift strategy;
  • A 3-year implementation plan for the establishment of new routes linking the Western Cape to other provinces and contents; and
  • The establishment of the Steering and Project Committees through the nomination of representatives by all stakeholders.

Phase 3

  • The implementation of the identified route opportunities;
  • The development of incentive schemes for the latter; and
  • The possibility of involving more direct private sector participation in the project.

Mr Monde Stratu, Garden Route DM Municipal Manager, also hinted at ACSA’s leadership to think about how the renaming of George Airport to Garden Route International Airport would affect the region. “When selling and marketing the region as a tourism destination and investment hub, it makes sense to speak from the same book,” said Stratu. He also made it clear that there is no obligation on any business to change their name, but that “there is every reason, for if you think about it, in marketing and strategy, to align oneself to this new name”.

ACSA owns and manages 9 airports, three national and 6 regional airports. George Airport currently forms part of the 6 regional airports. Airports Council International last year, awarded the George Airport with “Service” and “Safety” awards. This was done after comparing the airport to the rest of the African continent. This means that the George Airport is considered as one of the best regional airports in Africa.

Garden Route District Municipality attracts investment of R1-billion

Since the first Garden Route Investment Conference was held on 7 and 8 March 2018, Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM), has been in various promising engagements with domestic and foreign investors. First of many negotiations has already secured an R1-billion investment in Garden Route, accompanied by 3000 jobs over the next five years. This follows after the GRDM Council entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with Ikusasa Processing Engineering Consultants (Pty) Ltd on 28 August 2018. A report to the GRDM Council unpacked the conditions relating to a long-term lease of one of GRDM’s properties next to PetroSA to Ikusasa who will erect a Chemical Plant that will support the timber, water and textile sectors. Currently, in its design phase, the project will be implemented after a few weeks. It is envisaged that the factory will be fully operational by the end of 2019.

Sod-turning symbolising the birth of an initiative which will bring a positive change to the Garden Route. Pictured, FLTR: Mr Khakhaza Mhlauli ( CEO – Ikusasa Process Engineering Consultants, Ikusasa Chemicals, Ikusasa Water), Cllr Memory Booysen (GRDM Executive Mayor), Cllr Rosina Ruiters (GRDM Deputy Executive Mayor) and Mr Monde Stratu (GRDM Municipal Manager).

A Sod-Turning Ceremony was held on 28 September 2018 at the property. During the ceremony, Cllr Memory Booysen, GRDM Executive Mayor explained: “GRDM is in partnership with Mossel Bay Local Municipality and by working together, we are going to use the law to fast-track the process. We have seen other economic developments in Kouga, Richard’s Bay, Saldanha – now is the time for development to happen here”.

Mayor Booysen also talked about the regional landfill site which will soon be constructed in the same piece of land. He mentioned that these developmentswould benefit mostly people around the area.

The key stakeholders invited to witness this ceremony included Mossel Bay Municipality, PetroSA,  the Mossel Bay Port and Private Sector Partners and they will all play a pivotal role in the success of the project.

Key Stakeholders at the Sod-Turning Ceremony: Mr Lee Norman (Ikusasa Chairman), Mr Andrew Theunissen (Director – Ikusasa Process Engineering Consultants, Ikusasa Chemicals, Ikusasa Water), Cllr Memory Booysen (GRDM Executive Mayor), Cllr Harry Levendal (Mossel Bay Executive Mayor) and Mr Shadrack Tshikalange (Transnet Mossel Bay Port Manager)

With the site being positioned next to PetroSA, it will have many advantages. A close working relationship and the supply of products which are specific to PetroSA will be developed. Exports and imports via the Transnet Mossel Bay Port, less than 10km from the site, will have a positive effect on the economy and jobs. The N2 is also strategically connecting the site to other parts of the region. As this project grows, it could see Mossel Bay recognised as a special economic zone that will become an industrial hub of the Western Cape and South Africa.

According to Mr Nicholas Rankumar ( Director – Ikusasa Process Engineering Consultants), the “long-term vision for Ikusasa is to expand and scale the chemical plant into a world-class production facility”. He also said that there is “great potential to develop the Mossel Bay area into an export-hub.”

Cllr Harry Levendal, Mossel Bay Municipality’s Executive Mayor, welcomed the development and said: “This is a first of big thing that will happen in Mossel Bay. If you believe that something will happen and you go for it – it will happen. We cannot sit and wait for things to happen. I am thankful for Garden Route DM for their efforts to attract investment to the area”.

The group of dignitaries who witnessed the Sod-Turning Ceremony. Stakeholders include GRDM, Mossel Bay Municipality, Ikusasa, Transnet Mossel Bay Port and PetroSA.

GRDM Leadership’s visit to Indonesia

Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM) recently received an all-expenses-paid invitation (accommodation and flights) from the ISCC Group of Companies in Indonesia to visit them. It was decided that the Executive Mayor of the Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM), Councillor Memory Booysen; the Municipal Manager, Mr Monde Stratu; the Executive Manager: Planning and Economic Development, Mr Lusanda Menze and the Manager in the Office of the Executive Mayor, Mr Siphiwe Dladla, to travel to Indonesia from 6 to 11 September 2018.  GRDM came to know of the ISCC Executive Group Chairman and Chief Executive Officer earlier this year during the Garden Route Investment Conference.

Based on a concern raised by the Cllr Booysen, about presentations being made by companies who, not often return with tangible outcomes, the Chairperson and CEO of the ISCC Group, Mr Jean Bilala, extended an invitation to the GRDM, to visit their infrastructure projects in Indonesia in order to gain insight on the level and quality of what they are involved in.

The Group of Companies includes Ithuba Savings and Credits, LetsCoin $C and the ISC Bank.  These companies have a footprint in Germany, the United Kingdom, Hong Kong, Australia, India, Japan, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Laos, Thailand, as well as South Africa. Their South African branch is situated in Cape Town.

Signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between GRDM and Ithuba Savings and the ISC Bank eBanking and Investment Solutions. Signing the MoU is Mr Jean B. Bilala, President of Ithuba Savings, Cllr Memory Booysen, GRDM Executive Mayor (middle) and Mr Monde Stratu, GRDM Municipal Manager, were also signatories to the MoU.

The Group of Companies mainly focuses on technology, artificial intelligence and investment, and is a member of the prestige Bloomberg, as well as a lifetime member of International Securities Identification Number (ISIN).

The ISCC Group of Companies made the following proposal to GRDM:

  • To develop a sustainable smart town for industrial, commercial and residential development within the Garden Route District Municipality; and
  • The possible establishment of a manufacturing plant for electric cars of which the prototype was already developed and build in Germany (ISC Bank), within the Garden Route District.

During the visit, the delegation met with various business representatives in Indonesia, including businesses from India and Singapore, who indicated their intention or expanding and opening business in Africa.  The visit was concluded with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between Ithuba Savings and Credit; Len24 GmbH ISC Bank; E-Banking and Investment Solutions and the GRDM. The purpose of this MOU is to facilitate collaboration between the different parties in matters of common interest, as well as working arrangements necessary, for the implementation of the memorandum.

The priority areas which forms part of this understanding as outlined in the MOU are:

  • Cooperation in establishing and identifying land and infrastructure required to implement investment goals; and
  • To exchange information and identification of business opportunities to enhance mutual interests for the Garden Route and Western Cape Province.

GRDM is committed to positioning itself as a destination of choice for national and international investment and has recently embarked on various high-level engagements to realize these objectives.