EThekwini Mayor Councillor Mxolisi Kaunda outlined the City’s plans to grow township and rural economies during the second Township and Investment Summit held recently.
THE second annual Township and Investment Summit solidified the City’s commitment to provide the thrust necessary to expand investment promotion in townships and rural areas in eThekwini as well as drive the City’s Economic Recovery Plan.
The summit was held at the Octavia Hotel in Inanda on 14 September with the aim of unlocking economic opportunities. Forming part of the District Development Model and the Cities Support Programme by National Treasury, township and rural economies have become a focus in the country. The day unfolded with three plenary sessions unpacking government participation in creating sustainable development in rural communities followed by economic projects in townships and rural areas.
The sessions were represented by the City, business, unions, the KZN Growth Fund, the Ingonyama Trust Board, and the house of traditional leaders. Speaking on the success of the inaugural summit, eThekwini Mayor Councillor Mxolisi Kaunda highlighted the progress made thus far investing in township and rural economies. “In Sifiso Mdakane Road where Max’s Lifestyle and Eyadini Lounge are located in uMlazi, the City made huge infrastructure investment along this road to attract more businesses to the area. Last year we opened the Ezimbuzini trading stalls and the R42 million KwaMnyandu Industrial Hub.” He said these two facilities have changed the trading conditions of local entrepreneurs and has unlocked many economic opportunities for local businesses.
The Municipality has also identified the outer west region which incorporates areas such as Hammarsdale and Ntshongweni as strategic zones for investment for the transport, logistics and retail sector. He said the City is upgrading access roads in the Mtshebheni node for better access to businesses along Curnick Ndlovu Highway.