Pretoria – The KwaZulu-Natal provincial government is considering establishing an automotive supplier park.
Speaking at the launch of the new Toyota Corolla at the vehicle manufacturer’s plant in Durban, KZN Premier Senzo Mchunu said that the provincial government was committed to working with Toyota to strengthen the automobile sector.
“The provincial government is exploring the possibility of establishing an Automotive Supplier Park a few kilometres away from Toyota Plant – at the back of the proposed Dug-Out Port in the old Durban International Airport,” he said.
Even though statistics showed that new vehicle sales had started the year on a weak note, the province believes that it has an important role to play in ensuring the growth of the automotive industry.
“The production of the new Toyota corolla presents a new era of prosperity for the automobile industry in the province and the country as a whole.”
In 2012, the provincial government started negotiations with Toyota management in Japan asking the vehicle manufacturer to help it convince automobile suppliers to consider setting up their plants in the proposed park.
“There are also opportunities for automotive leather upholstery manufacturers to be located in the park and to also supply the automotive suppliers and manufacturers across the country and the international market.
“Today’s launch is an indication that Toyota is committed to continuing to provide vehicles that meet the needs of customers in South Africa, and to continue being the most preferred brand in the country,” said Mchunu.
Toyota has been producing vehicles in Durban since 1962.
“Government appreciates investments by Toyota towards skills development,” said Mchunu. –