The Coega Development Corporation (CDC) opened its doors this year with revived tenacity and enthusiasm. “We are encouraged by the improved business confidence this year and are optimistic it would translate to future business prospects,” said Dr Ayanda Vilakazi, CDC Unit head of Marketing, Brand and Corporate Communications. In the year 2018, the CDC is poignant with enthusiasm as it awaits the completion of investment projects valued in excess of R12 billion. The projects are, which include, Osho Cement – R600 million; Customs Control Area (in the logistics sector); Beijing Automobile International Corporation (BAIC SA) – R11 billion; Hella (Automotive investment in the CDC Logistics Park) – R53.3 million and MM Engineering – R350 million. Heading into the latter part of the FY2017/18, the CDC forecasts to achieve a minimum of 12 investors with projected additional jobs of 675. Some of the targeted investment sectors include automotive, agro-processing and chemicals just to mention a few. “Casting our gaze to last year, the Coega SEZ saw the successful completion of over five (5) projects – Kenako Concrete, Corromaster, National Ship Chandlers, Sanitech and FinCorp valued at R180 million,” adds Dr Vilakazi. “Furthermore, on the jobs front, the CDC as of year to date in the FY2017/18 has secured no less than 9441 additional construction jobs and realised 7953 cumulative operational jobs. The organisation has also ensured that it has its sights set on skills development, through training over 2716 people in the current FY,” highlights Dr Vilakazi. Validation by captains of industry has seen the organisation crowned winners in five (5) different awards since the start of the year FY2017/18. The awards won so far include the Vision 2030 – Infrastructure Development award, Sub-Saharan Enterprise Awards – Best International Trade Marketing Specialist in Africa, Exporters Awards – IDC Job creation, Best Provider of Service to Exporters, and Top Employer 2018 – Certified Excellence in Employer Conditions. In 2018, the CDC will continue to be at the forefront of socio-economic development by creating jobs, infrastructure development and encourage skills development in the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan Municipality as well as other areas.