From Creamer Media in Johannesburg, this is the Real Economy Report.
Africa Pipe Industries expects its new pipe plant to record turnover of between R300-million and R400-million in its first year of operation. Irma Venter visited the company’s Sasolburg facility.
API’s R70-million mill may be brand new to the pipe industry, but company boss Jansen van Nieuwenhuizen is not. His 28-years’ experience in the pipe industry has seen him work for Group Five Pipe and Hall Longmore, with the last ten years spent in Nigeria running a pipe plant for an Israeli company. Now he is back in South Africa taking on the competition in the local market.
API CEO John-Gordon Jansen van Nieuwenhuizen
Jansen Van Nieuwenhuizen says API’s decision to invest in the plant was driven by a shortage of capacity in the local steel-pipe manufacturing industry as water demand continues to pick up.
John-Gordon Jansen van Nieuwenhuizen:
Irma Venter: To cater for this growing demand, API is planning a second pipe mill which will also produce 20-inch- to 120-inch-diameter steel pipe, and which will also have a 100 000 t/y capacity. A third mill is to produce 8 inch to 20 inch steel pipes.
Shannon de Ryhove:
Coca-Cola aims to decrease its environmental impact at its new Valpre bottling plant, in Heidelberg. Christy van der Merwe compiled this report.
Consumers and companies are becoming more and more aware of the impact that everyday products have on the environment during production. One of the companies aiming at lessening this impact is Coca-Cola. In particular, through innovations at the company’s new Valpre springwater bottling plant in Heildelberg, east of Johannesburg.
First off, Valpre has introduced what it calls ‘PlantBottle’ packaging, made from up to 30% plant materials, thus fewer harmful petrochemicals, and 100% recyclable. South Africa is the tenth market in the world to launch PlantBottle and the first in Africa.
Furthermore, the Heidelberg bottling facility is striving for LEED, or leadership in energy and environmental design’s certification, which is awarded to buildings implementing a number of green building principals. The administration building has already been awarded LEED GOLD certification. The location of the plant was chosen to get closer to the market, decreasing transport costs and associated emissions. The construction of the facility incorporated recycled materials, thus reducing the carbon footprint of materials used. The orientation of the building and window placement means that the use of natural light is optimised and almost no artificial lighting is required.
A 30 kW solar installation by Lapp Group Southern Africa’s renewable energy division provides a portion of electricity for the facility, which also makes use of solar water heating. Rainwater harvesting takes place and the company also has a water balance initiative in place. One-hundred per cent of the effluence is treated, and the plant has an ambitious zero-to-land fill target.
These are some of the ways that Coca-Cola says it is bringing consumer driven, environmentally responsible developments to the market place.
Report compiled by Christy van der Merwe.
Shannon de Ryhove:
Other news making headlines this week: Transnet moves ahead with its R12-billion Swazi study as coal-line tempos pick up; and Gautrain operations and construction are faring well.
Transnet CEO Brian Molefe confirms that the feasibility study into a new R12.3-billion freight line through Swaziland is advancing, and that a government-to-government deal to facilitate the project could be signed before year-end and that construction could start in 2012.
Transnet CEO Brian Molefe
It is difficult to establish if the newly opened Gautrain route between Hatfield station, in Pretoria, and Rosebank station, in Johannesburg, is alleviating traffic congestion in these cities, but feedback has been positive, reports the Gautrain Management Agency.
Gautrain Management Agency CEO Jack van der Merwe
That’s Creamer Media’s Real Economy Report. Join us again next week for more news and insight into South Africa’s real economy.