Dube Trade Port plan finally begins to take off.

Posted On Monday, 04 November 2002 10:01 Published by
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Durban - Sceptics who think the Dube Trade Port initiative at La Mercy, which will include the new King Shaka International airport, is unlikely to ever get off the ground may have to reconsider their point of view.
Durban - Sceptics who think the Dube Trade Port initiative at La Mercy, which will include the new King Shaka International airport, is unlikely to ever get off the ground may have to reconsider their point of view.

Last week Ithala Development Finance, the provincial development finance agency which is spearheading the project on behalf of the government, received tenders from seven prospective financial advisers.

The project, to relocate Durban's airport to La Mercy, was first touted in 1970s but never got off the ground despite several attempts in the last 30 years to resuscitate the plan. This time the provincial government has extended the initiative to include an economic zone.

Ithala's
chief executive Shabir Chohan said: 'This first tendering process moves the Dube Trade Port initiative from the planning phase to the implementation phase. We expect to be able to finalise the highly complex evaluation process and make an appointment by the end of the year.'

Consortiums which are tendering are led by The Pumelela Consortium, PricewaterhouseCoopers, the Masithuthe Consortium, Ernst & Young, Kagiso Financial Services, Deloitte & Touche, and the J&J Group.

The project is expected to cost almost R2 billion and the successful adviser could earn between 10 percent and 15 percent of the total cost of the project.

Chohan said the project aimed to unlock the province's economic potential through the creation of a new generation economic zone, including the new airport and industrial development area as well as a cyber port and a cyber village. It also aimed to bring a new focus to value-added activities such as the export of perishables and e-commerce activities.

Chohan said the role of the financial transaction adviser would include leading a professional team in drawing up proposals for presentation to the national treasury to secure public-private partnership approval for various aspects of the implementation of the Dube Trade Port initiative.

Ithala set up a special purpose vehicle to implement the initiative.

It has registered the Dube Trade Port Limited as a wholly owned subsidiary of the Ithala group.

Publisher: Business Report
Source: Business Report

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