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DEVAC Infrasfuture conference addresses challenges facing the African sector

The annual two-day DEVAC Infrasfuture conference and expo was held earlier this month, looking at how the delivery process in the infrastructure sector be fast-tracked. The event brought together public and private sector decision-makers to address challenges facing the African sector.
Image source: Gallo/Getty
Image source: Gallo/Getty

"We want to build infrastructure to support local industries to create opportunities and broaden the floor of financing in the sector. The national investment target of R238bn per annum is unaffordable to the national fiscus alone. Private sector support and participation are required to achieve the NDP target of 30% gross fixed capital formation," said Dr Kgosientso Ramokgopa, head of investment and infrastructure in the Office of the President of South Africa.

An optimistic way forward

Njombo Lekula, managing director of PPC Cement South Africa, looked at the outlook and an optimistic way forward for the African infrastructure sector in the new normal Covid-19 world.

“Notwithstanding government’s leadership role in this aspect, the government cannot do it alone. It is time to forge stronger partnerships to resolve funding challenges and other related issues that are delaying the realisation of our economic goals. It is also urgent that we have more agile and pro-growth policies and regulations that will protect our sector from the harmful effects of imports, whilst enabling accelerated growth of SMMEs,” said Lekula.

"Supporting initiatives with regional trading partners can create new markets as Covid-19 has reduced barriers to entry supported by technology. Consumption patterns have changed demand, coupled with slow economic growth to pre-Covid levels provides an advantage of the time to revise and reconstruct development plans differently – inter-Africa competition will prevent us from transforming our local economies into a regional economy, "said Vishaal Lutchman, CEO, the South African Institution of Civil Engineering (SAICE).

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