A R7-million fund is to be made available to automotive component manufacturers in the Eastern Cape to reduce energy consumption, through an agreement between the Eastern Cape’s Automotive Industry Development Centre (AIDC), which is an agency of the provincial government, and the National Cleaner Production Centre.
AIDC supplier development manager Lance Schultz says the establishment of the fund comes at a time when rising utility costs and poor productivity are stifling the economic progress of automotive companies in South Africa, and “represents a significant injection from government into the sector”.
Schultz says the cleaner production programme will be incorporated as part of the AIDC’s Tirisano cluster programme, which in 2010 made collective savings at participating component suppliers of around R13,6-million.
“The Tirisano cluster programme is already highly effective in increasing profitability at suppliers through reducing waste. The inclusion of the cleaner production module, which is an economic and environmental imperative, is a major boost to the programme and the local industry.”