Pretoria — Eskom and the Coega Development Corporation (CDC) have signed a collaborative agreement on South Africa's nuclear new build programme.
Signed on Tuesday, the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) will see the two state-owned companies work together in support of government's plans to build local capacity through supplier development and localisation around the unfolding infrastructure for the nuclear programme.
"We are gearing ourselves up in preparation for the nuclear new build programme in order to deliver the project within the set timelines and budget. We want to ensure that South Africans get reliable, decarbonised baseload power that will bring sustainable economic growth," said Eskom's Group Executive for Group Capital, Abram Masango.
Masango said it is critical to lay the foundation for local people to participate meaningfully during the various stages of the project by skilling them for jobs as well as business opportunities.
The areas of cooperation covered in the MOU will include, but will not be limited to, the following:
Project management and implementation services for infrastructure development;
Skills development and localisation;
Provision of the requisite skills training for different stages of the project;
Socio-economic development (SED) studies in relation to the impact of the NNBP; and
Fitness for duty (FFD) centre processes.
Stakeholder engagement and communications
The Coega Development Corporation's Executive Manager of Business Development, Christopher Mashigo said the collaboration with Eskom is aligned with the corporation's mandate to drive the creation of an industrial complex to promote integration with industry and increase value-added production, while creating employment.
"An integrated energy plan carries with it the potential to catalyse the re-industrialisation of the East Coast Corridor manufacturing economy - translating to a higher and inclusive growth path and job creation," said Mashigo.
Meanwhile, Eskom has applied for the environmental authorisation for the first nuclear power reactors.
The environmental assessment practitioners recommended Thyspunt site, which is located in Jeffrey's Bay, in the Eastern Cape, as the preferred site.
Eskom said the success of the nuclear new build programme rests on the participation of various government departments and state-owned enterprises.
"The memorandum of understanding between Coega and Eskom enhances the bond between these state entities."
Eskom is the designated procurer for the nuclear new build programme.
The CDC is mandated to develop, grow, and attract manufacturing capabilities in the Coega Industrial Development Zone in the Eastern Cape.