Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies has welcomed Chinese electronics manufacturer Hisense's R72 million investment into its refrigeration and television production lines at its Atlantis factory in the Western Cape.
Referring to the investment as an "important achievement", Davies said the injection into the plant is proof that South Africa remains an attractive investment destination across all sectors, including advanced manufacturing.
The Minister on Monday launched the official expansion of the factory located outside Cape Town.
Hisense, a leading global company and a world leader of flat panel television, household appliances and mobile communication, is expanding its plant as it gears for the growth of the fast moving consumer goods sector on the African continent.
"Everyone who is involved with this kind of a project needs to be extremely proud of what has been achieved here because this is an important investment, which has injected R72 million into the economy and created 150 quality manufacturing job opportunities. Moreover, this investment brings Hisense's total investment in this Atlantis plant to R440 million, which is a significant investment," said Davies.
Economic Development Minister Ebrahim Patel officially opened the then R350 million plant in June 2013.
At Monday's launch, Davies was informed that the plant has been rated as the best performing plant in the world outside China.
"This means that the plant is performing better than others based in North America and the European Union member countries. This is something we need to be proud of as a country and I congratulate Hisense South Africa for that accolade. This is part of our pitch as a country for manufacturing investment that if you come and invest in South Africa, you will have a good experience."
The Hisense plant was an example of the commitment of government in general, and the Department of Trade and Industry (dti) in particular, to supporting manufacturing in South Africa, Daives said.
"As a department, we are very happy that the first investment was supported by the dti through is Manufacturing and Competitive Enhance Programme, as well as through the tariff rate dispensation that has supported the investment in the fridges," said Davies.
The manufacturing development is a much needed boost to the local community of Atlantis, with more than 500 people being employed on a permanent basis.
President of Hisense Middle East-Africa Holdings, Jerry Liu, said the new manufacturing lines would not only create 150 new job opportunities but high-level skills development will be at the forefront of the company's skill development programme.
"As we expand our presence in Southern Africa, Hisense remains committed to providing solutions that will enable growth and sustain economic development.
"Hisense is keen to support government localisation programmes by partnering with South African manufacturers and logistics network to consolidate an integrated domestic supply chain," said Liu.