A nuclear energy business desk has been created by the South African Nuclear Energy Corporation (Necsa) and the Black Business Council. The establishment of the desk was announced on Monday and followed a meeting between the two organisations on Friday. The desk has been set up against the background of South Africa’s proposed programme to build new nuclear power plants.
“We cannot repeat the mistakes of the past,” said Necsa CEO Phumzile Tshelane. “The nuclear new build programme should lead to industrialisation in South Africa with meaningful participation by black business practitioners.”
“We will not be mere spectators: we have to engage government and other stakeholders as the programme unfolds,” affirmed Black Business Council (BBC) president Ndaba Ntsele. “The programme must have local content at all levels.”
The Friday meeting included a briefing by Necsa about the planned new nuclear build programme, including the government’s intentions regarding localisation, including massive industrialisation, and the opportunities that would be created for black business. The meeting also reviewed black business’ experiences with the country’s previous mega projects.
As a consequence, the new nuclear energy desk will first draw up a directory of black companies able to take part in different elements of the new nuclear build programme. This will be in line with the BBC’s aim of promoting black involvement in the mainstream economy.
The new desk will also provide a means to allow black businesses to liaise with Necsa and other organisations involved in the new nuclear programme. The intention is that the desk will serve to share information, develop experiences and facilitate networking. Furthermore, it will seek to ascertain the training requirements for the development of the technical skills that will be needed to take part in the new nuclear programme.