The Province of KwaZulu-Natal's goal is to focus on the issue of radical economic transformation. In addition, the Province has to align its interventions with the recently identified seven National Priority Economic Interventions. These are as follows:
Priority Intervention 1
Resolving the Energy Crises and Enhancing the Energy Mix.
KwaZulu-Natal is committed to energy security through restoring of generation capacity, increasing new generation capacity and reducing energy demand. This commitment will require the province to increase energy generation, including developing new sources of energy, as well as ensuring that energy is used wisely.
As a coastal province and given the topography and climate, the region is ideally positioned to make extensive contributions to new generatingcapacity. The Province has engaged with and has firm commitments from the sugar, as well as thepaper and pulp industry to contribute up to 200 Mega Watt (MW) of new renewable energy within a
relatively short space of time. The Province has set a target of 5 000 MW new renewable energy by 2030
with 2 400MW to be online by 2020.
KwaZulu-Natal is strategically located to the Mozambique and other African gas fields. An intention is to ensure that the Port of Richards Bay and the Richards Bay IDZ is developed as a logistics platform for both oil and gas to ensure that a more cost effective option for energy generation than the current diesel plants used by Eskom is provided.
An investigation of additional coal and gas fired power generation, as well as expediting the processes to procure new renewable energy under the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Programme (REIPP) is underway.
The Department of Energy and Eskom are completing the National Energy Master Plan to review current
legislation and regulatory framework to cater for greater potential for in particular the sugar industry in this Province to contribute to the production of ethanol.
Amendments to legislation in order to facilitate own generation by intensive energy users, so as to reduce demand on the grid, is also required.A proposal to establish a renewable energy fund and an energy trading agency for the Province is well advanced.
Priority Intervention 2
Moderating Workplace Conflict
Work place labour conflict disrupts productivity and the ability to grow the economy within a stable labour environment. The Province needs to create more jobs, and retain the ones created. Organised labour and organised business are requested to assist in creating an environment of stability in the workplace and to contribute to the improvement of investor confidence
in the Province.
Priority Intervention 3
Revitalising the Agriculture Value Chain
The agricultural sector is key to ensure food production and security in the Province. The production of red meat, poultry farming, fruit and vegetables, wine, forestry, fisheries, biofuels (sorghum, sugar cane), are all suited to KwaZulu-Natal's climate and topography. A new focus, as expressed in the Provincial Agriculture Policy Action Plan is to grow the economic contribution of agricultural sector to the KZN economy and to create new employment opportunities in the process. The targets set in this regard is to increase the value of the current agricultural contribution to the provincial economy of about R 18 Billion to R 23 Billion by 2020. A target of creating 10 000 new jobs in the agricultural sector over the next five years has been set.
These targets will be pursued vigorously through programmes that will provide intensified support to the beneficiaries of land claims and land redistribution processes to become viable agricultural entities. This will open up space for increased private sector investment and build on the expansion of established markets, and it will also reduce the state's spending on
unsustainable support programmes. In tandem with the approach outlined above, a radical shift to more labour intensive agriculture through the development of new irrigation schemes wherever arable land is found adjacent to rivers and streams is required.
The full agriculture value chain will be supported and opportunities for local entrepreneurial development and local business participation optimised.
Priority Intervention 4
Targeted Support for the Metals/Engineering Value Chain
Although KwaZulu-Natal is certainly not the mining heartland of South Africa, the bulk of the minerals mined in this country leaves our shores from KwaZulu-Natal harbours. Good progress has been made to establish beneficiation plants
at Ngagane just South of Newcastle and Colenso. These sites were specifically identified because of existing infrastructure
related to decommissioned power stations on both sites, as well as its proximity to the railway line transporting mineral
wealth to the ports. This proposal intends to develop at least five smelters at a cost of R 22 Billion and with a potential to create 8 000 permanent jobs.
Priority Intervention 5
Crowding in Private Sector investment
KwaZulu-Natal fully recognises the role of the private sector to grow the economy and to create jobs. The government
will continue to create an investor friendly environment. The Province has established a firm relationship with the private
sector through its engagement with the KwaZulu-Natal Growth Coalition which is co-chaired by the Premier and Mr Moses
Tembe, as the nominated leader from the business community in KZN. The Province also has a close working relationship with the KwaZulu-Natal Council of Business Chambers, that coordinates the activities of all business chambers across the region.
Priority Intervention 6
Unlocking SMMEs and Co- Operatives Potential
As much as the contribution of large corporates to our economy is value, the importance of creating an environment for small business to grow is emphasized. We need to achieve a much higher participation rate in our economy. An approach to building and expanding the small business sector is specifically intended to create the space for new entrepreneurs to emerge and to link up where possible with large corporates to grow the economy and create the jobs. The Province is committed to create a better supportiveenvironment through practice notes for Provincial and municipal spheres of government. This will be aimed at ensuring that government departments adhere to local procurement requirements and to ensure that at least 30% of all government procurement goes to small businesses. With the support of the KZNSmall Business Development Agency the provincial government will expedite and expand an incubation
programme for small businesses, do its best to reduce "red tape" for small business and support access to
funding through soft loans and grants.
Priority Intervention 7
Consolidating ICT Through the Telecommunications Sector - Rollout of Broadband
Given the vast strides made in the development of new technology and modern trends in business and government management, it has become virtually impossible to manage business or for that matter to run a government, without solid ICT support. ICT has become a key enabler and virtual backbone for economic growth. The Provincial Broadband Strategy
and Implementation Plan has been in progress for the past four years in partnership with national government. Approximately 14 459 kilometres, which is about 80% of fibre optic backbone have been rolled out throughout the Province. The last mile broadband and internet connectivity efforts have seen 1583 schools connected to date. In the past year all 119 clinics in the districts of Amajuba, Umgungundlovu and Umzinyathi have been connected. Telemedicine and remote diagnosis has been made possible by providing 34 of the health facilities with video-conferencing equipment.