Business In Msunduzi Municipality
Quarterly Economic & Business Report for Pietermaritzburg & uMgungundlovu District:
In fact, many of the economic performance indicators reveal that the Pietermaritzburg economy has doubled in the past two years. The Pietermaritzburg District Economy Summary Graph:
The graph of the Economic Performance Indicator, which is a weighted measure of several indicators, reveals that economic activity in the city and its hinterland has doubled since January, 2003. Further indicators of the city's healthy economy, are the sharp decline in business insolvencies, as well as a decline in unemployment.
Economic Development & Growth
Based on an analysis of more than twenty economic indicators, such as business turnover, wage bills, unemployment, new job postings, property prices, retail activity, vehicle sales, and traffic volumes, building plans, electricity consumption and insolvencies, Clive Coetzee, an economist at UKZN, concluded:
"Pietermaritzburg and the uMgungundlovu District have achieved remarkable growth in economic activity during 2003 and 2004. Business confidence is also very favourable at present. What is particularly encouraging is that the benefits of the performance of the local economy have not only accrued to a select few, but that more and more people are experiencing the benefits. One must, however, recognize that there is still a large number of people that have not experienced these benefits, but the longer the local economy can sustain the past performance the higher the possibility that even more people will experience these benefits in the future.
Clearly, many factors are responsible for Pietermaritzburg becoming a choice city in terms of living, shopping and investing in. However, The Msunduzi Municipality's proactive approach, coupled with a generous and flexible incentives package, has been a significant contributing factor.
Since 2001 the municipality's Investment Facilitation Team, which includes officials from every unit, has been meeting twice per month, and enabling prospective investors to interact in a one-stop-shop setting. Major products, such as The Golden Horse Casino and Hotel Centre and the Liberty Midlands Mall, were completed on time and within budget, as a result of this approach.
Jim McLean, MD of Liberty Properties stated "The Msunduzi Municipality is the most co-operative, knowledgeable and proactive I have ever dealt with".
Generous & Flexible Packages:
In addition to the free connections to bulk services, and a refund building plan approval fees, we offer electricity sewage and waste removal discounts, as well as rates rebates for the first three years. However, we are prepared to structure the package to best suit the particular needs of an investor. In short, we will do whatever is necessary to facilitate your investment. In the words of Gary Owen, Managing Director of Plexicor, "I can say without reservation that Msunduzi did everything in its power to smooth the way for me to move my operation to Pietermaritzburg."
Since the introduction of this package in 2001, more than forty new investments, and a similar number of expansions, have been granted concessions, resulting in the creation of 7000 new jobs thus, although traditional strong sectors may have shed jobs, the city's economy is now much broader and more high-tech, and more globally competitive than ever before. Increasingly, firms in the city are demonstrating that it is possible to compete globally and also that the city's strategic location, astride the highway connecting Gauteng", Africa's financial and industrial hub with Durban, Africa's busiest port, is the ideal location from which to serve South Africa's main markets. Several firms have therefore established their South African headquarters in Pietermaritzburg.
The tempo of investment and growth shows no signs of stopping. On the contrary, in the last fifteen months, 18 new and 21 expansions have been facilitated, creating 840 new jobs.