Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies on Tuesday launched Defy’s R130 million investment in South Africa that will not only boost the country as an investment destination but also aid in creating much-needed jobs.
The investment will see the multinational produce 6 to 7 and 5 to 10 kilogram top loader washing machines for both the local and export market.
The investment is projected to produce a total of 75 new job opportunities that will manufacture 500 top loaders per shift.
Speaking at the announcement of the investment at Defy’s factory in Jacobs, Durban, Davies said the manufacturing development is a much-needed boost to the local community.
“It is important to note that even though statistics of this investment sound modest in nature, they will go a long way in unlocking job opportunities in the South African economy. They will also help us sustain our position which has seen us continue increasing foreign direct investment into the country, while the rest of the continent has experienced a contraction,” he said.
The Minister anticipates a significant increase in South African products to the African market, way more than it is at this current stage.
“We are on the cusp of a very big change for Africa and the ratification of the Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement, which was adopted by 22 members in Gambia on 22 April 2019, will open up the market for products manufactured from these countries. I hope also that this ratification will enable an expansion of South Africa’s exports into Africa as well and commit to work with initiatives of this nature,” said Davies.
The multinational will also invest in new cooking products. In July, Defy will launch a new outlook for their 60cm built-in ovens with an investment of approximately R7 million which will be followed by a new free-standing stove investment of approximately R18 million launching in the first quarter of 2020.
Defy has also signed an agreement with Wits University to start a cooperation for joint engineering studies focusing on developing new technologies for some of its products.
The new satellite laboratory will be located in Midrand, Johannesburg and will be operational by July 2019. The total investment for this project is R15.7million with a total 39 new employment opportunities created.