Transnet makes big BEE promises around the R7 billion Durban Container Terminal project

Ujuh Reporter

Transnet is making big promises in the way of broad-based black economic empowerment (BEE), local participation and general socio-economic benefits from its R7 billion project that sets out to create deeper berths at the Durban Container Terminal (DCT).

This came out of an address to local stakeholders for the project scheduled to begin at the end October. The long list of promises touches on themes like  opening up business opportunities and capacity building for Black Woman Owned and Youth Owned Companies.

The contract for the multi-billion-rand Main Marine Construction Works package has been awarded to CMI Emtateni Joint Venture. The venture is said to boast a Level 2 B-BBEE status. It is made up largely of four entities which include Italian construction company CMC Di Ravenna and its 51% black-owned South African company CMI Infrastructure. The local partner is said to be a 10-year old unincorporated Joint Venture with PG Mavundla Engineering.

The CMI led venture also includes a partnership with Omame Emtateni Empowerment Group Consortium. This is described as a combination of five local, independently owned, black- woman-owned companies that have been working as a collective for the last fifteen years, and Masinya Emtateni Empowerment Group Consortium which was also formed through a combination of five local black companies.

List of the socio-economic benefits promises

A statement issued by the implementing units, the Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) and Transnet Port Terminals (TPT) list the following promises:

  • CMI has committed a minimum of 40% of the total contract value towards Supplier Development, including the establishment of a 100% black women-owned ready mix concrete supplier to the value of more than R70 million.
  • CMI expects to create 380 jobs through this project, of which around 45% will be semi-skilled or skilled, while 55% will be unskilled jobs.
  • More than R700 million will be invested by CMI to promote small businesses, spanning Black Women Owned, Black Owned, Black Youth Owned, QSEs and EMEs.
  • In terms of regional spend CMI will invest more than R182 million, with 70% of this ploughed back into building the capacity of black-owned suppliers and installers of rebar and steel reinforcing.
  • 20% of the regional spend would go towards providing black female owned fuel supply companies with consistent revenue over a sustained period, thereby allowing these companies to increase local market capacity.
  • For the remaining 10% of its regional spend, CMI has identified various black youth owned companies who can provide materials and services, including construction tools, construction spares and site support, and has also matched the capabilities of five companies owned by people with disabilities to specific activities on the project.
  • The areas of KZN chosen by Transnet for positive rural integration initiatives through this project are KwaMduzi, Mkuze, Ingwavuma, KwaNgwanase, Manguzi, Jozini and Pongola.

Broader significance

The statement adds that an independent Environmental Compliance Officer (ECO) package was awarded to GIBB to audit environmental compliance on the project.

Transnet Chief Capital Officer, Krishna Reddy, said the R7 billion mega project would help to sustain the existing container operations at the Port of Durban, specifically DCT Berths 203 to 205.

“In the Port of Durban which handles approximately 65% of the total containerised cargo of South Africa, we have a critical need to provide modern, safe, deeper and longer container berths to accommodate the ever-increasing size of container vessels we are now servicing. This will ensure that our flagship Port of Durban and South Africa as a whole remain competitive within the industry, while catering safely for the needs of the marine sector,” he said.

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