Shipbuilding was in the news this week as Minister Rob Davies took the opportunity to highlight its potential contribution to the economy at the launch of a new vessel built at the Damen Shipyard Cape Town Facilities.
Smit Amandla Marine (SAM) partnered with Damen Shipyards to build two new vessels at a cost of R150 million.
SAM took on the local boat building challenge and made the decision to build the two vessels locally as part of their obligations in the National Industrial Participation Programme.
Rob Davies, Trade and Industry Minister, said, “We’ve identified that we have an opportunity to more or less triple the number of people employed, as well as the contribution to the GDP between now and 2033 from the oceans economy and one of the sub-sections of that is boat and shipbuilding.”
Smit Amandla Marine director Paul Maclons said, “While it is often more cost-effective to build these vessels in the East, it made sense to explore other options and support client and country priorities, with our company investing significantly into the local economy.”
The naming ceremony for one of the vessels took place on Thursday. The vessel was named the Aukwatowa.
Also making headlines this week was the announcement that South Africa’s state-owned aerospace and defence company, Denel, will be launching its maritime division, with the aim of becoming a strategic partner to the South African Navy.
The launch will take place at the upcoming Maritime Africa Conference and Exhibition taking place at the CTICC in November.
Ismail Dockrat, chief executive of Denel Integrated Systems and Maritime said, “Maritime Africa is a fantastic opportunity for Denel to launch our maritime division in public and articulate our aspirations within the sector.”
Also in the news this week is another abalone arrest which took place in Hermanus. The a 52-year-old man suspect was arrested and dried abalone with an estimated value of R1.2 million was confiscated.
According to the press the threat to the survival of the African penguin is so great that conservation organisations are planning to take drastic action to try to save this species from possible extinction.
The plan is to set up an artificial penguin colony on the southern Cape coast. According to Christina Hagen, of Birdlife South Africa, the two sites being considered for the colony are De Hoop Nature Reserve and a stretch of state-owned land at Keurboom near, Plettenberg Bay.
The proposal for the artificial colony will be discussed at the World Seabird Conference in Cape Town next week.
Seabird, Cape Nature, the Department of Environmental Affairs and Sanccob will be part of the discussion to decide on the best location for the artificial colony.