Trade mission whets South African business people for Mozambique's mega gas projects
A week-long Outward Trade and Investment Mission to Pemba and Maputo in Mozambique has whetted the appetite of South African business people for mega gas projects plans.
The mission was organized by the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) with the aim of exposing the South African companies to opportunities presented by the Mozambican economy for trade and investment. The mission comprised of business seminars, business-to-business meetings and site visits.
The Executive Director of the Steel Tube Export Association of South Africa, Mr Keitumetse Moumakoe says the South African delegates were overawed by the amount of information that was shared with them on the mega gas projects.
“I have been coming here for the past two years but what we saw and heard this time was incredible. For the first time we managed to interact with the project implementers and got information on the opportunities presented by the projects directly from them. For the first time we saw tangible signs of the roll-out of the projects as construction has been commenced in earnest and things have started moving in regards to the ancillary projects on the ground. All of these really whetted our appetite and made us envious. It was really inspiring," says Moumakoe.
Moumakoe adds that what became clear from the mission is that the South African companies would miss the boat if they do not act proactively and establish their presence in Mozambique.
“The gas projects have attracted a huge interest among companies from different parts of the world. If the South African businesspeople want to successfully take advantage of these opportunities, they need to set up there and be where the action is, otherwise they may be overtaking by developments. The time is now. They cannot wait for another day. International companies are descending on Mozambique for the projects," advises Moumakoe.
The Business Development Manager of Inkwali Fabrication and Maintenance, Mr Sboniso Zungu, says he identified opportunities in the gas value chain that his company may have potential access.
“The mission was beneficial to us in that I was able to interact with engineering companies in gas and other sectors to explore possible synergies and partnerships. We see ourselves participating in the large gas infrastructure projects. It was also important to get clarity from project implementers about various requirements such as local content, enterprise development and standards, ”adds Zungu whose company is the beneficiary of the dti's Black Industrialists Program.
The Business Development Director of Flowtite South Africa, Ms. Vanessa khathwane says Mozambique has always been in its company's expansion plans to increase its export market. The company is currently exporting pipes for water and sewerage to Zimbabwe, Botswana and Swaziland.
“The mission has enabled us to identify a lot of opportunities that could have tasks us months to identify on our own, because the dti brought everyone we needed to meet under one roof. We are convinced that we have an advantage in this market as everyone was speaking about steel for the gas projects, while our focus is on water pipes for government and agricultural projects,” adds Khathwane.