uMkhanyakude promoted as investment destination

29 March 2017

The district’s agriculture and tourism sectors should be utilised more

POSITIONING uMkhanyakude District as one of the most attractive investment destinations in KZN is the aim of the provincial Department of Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs (EDTEA).
An investment promotion and facilitation strategy workshop was last week held at the uMkhanyakude municipal offices in Mkhuze, attended by EDTEA, COGTA (Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs), local municipal officials, as well as public and private sector representatives.
The aim of the workshop was for EDTEA to present its draft strategy to relevant stakeholders, obtain feedback and finalise the strategy.
EDTEA identified uMkhanyakude for investment promotion because of its tourism resources, vast flatlands, agricultural production and processing opportunities and its proximity to markets such as Swaziland, Mozambique, Mpumalanga and Gauteng.
The strategy is to offer competitive business infrastructure, opportunities to expand the existing tourism market and to provide good service.
The department’s plans to construct an official airport at the Mkhuze airstrip are already underway and fall under this investment promotion strategy.
Apart from tourism, EDTEA said uMkhanyakude must be made attractive to not only agricultural production investors, but agricultural processing investors too.
By processing agricultural produce, including juicing and canning pineapples already grown in the district, and processing farmed cattle into various meat products, more business and employment opportunities will be made available to residents in the district.
This will also open up more markets for the products and allow the district to make money from selling finished products rather than settling for a fraction of this amount from selling only the raw materials.
EDTEA said the government must also be targeted for investment in the form of building more schools, clinics, a hospital and university.
EDTEA will work closely with uMkhanyakude District Municipality in implementing the strategy once finalised.

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