Thursday, March 23, 2023

Creation of manufacturing hub in Botswana mooted

Gazal Corporation Limited through its subsidiary, Bisley Workwear (BW), is looking at prospects of establishing Botswana as a hub to supply Australian Standards certified protective wear to the local and regional markets, the Divisional and Quality Manager, Matthew Graham, said.

Graham told The Telegraph in Gaborone last week that the Australian Securities Exchange-listed Gazal Group, with almost 54 years of experience in the apparel business, would capitalize on the recently concluded joint-venture partnership with the Botswana-based Power Fusion Solutions (PFS) to create, in the very near future, the manufacturing hub dispensing international quality protective wear for the lucrative sub-Saharan market.

Further, Gazal, with an annual turnover of Australian $173 million in 2011 that is expected to increase to A$276 million during 2012, enjoys the unique privilege of supplying protective wear to the existing PFS clientele, who include the Botswana Meat Commission, Botswana Power and the Water Utilities Corporations, Morupule Colliery and BCL Mines as a foundation for building the hub.

Graham said what sets Botswana apart from its other continental counterparts are the investor-and-business friendly environment coupled with a sound political democratic governance, which put the stakes higher for the building of a protective wear manufacturing plant.

According to Graham, BW would tap on the Gazal Group’s economic and technical expertise to provide the most competitive price margins and work wear conforming to the most stringent health and safety solutions, such as insect protection, heat management, anti-bacterial, fire resistant and anti-static fabrications.

The company continually focuses on worker comfort and climatic influences with regional specific designs for the mining, construction, petrochemical, oil and gas.

“According to the World Health Organization malaria and other insect transmitted diseases slow down economic growth in Africa by up to 1.3 percent annually. For instance, out of the sub-Saharan Africa’s estimated gross domestic product of US $300 billion, the short-term benefit of insect control programmes can whittle away between $3 bn and $12 bn per year. Globally there are between 300 to 500 million clinical cases of malaria each year, however, over 85 percent of world malaria-related fatalities, infections and disabilities occur in Africa. As oil and gas explorations are conducted in emerging African markets, integrated vector management, such as treated clothing, mosquito netting and medication, forms part of better decision making and appreciation of the risk-ridden environments,” he said, adding, “Apart from malaria, US scientific estimates that, currently, one person out of six has been infected with insect transmitted diseases, such as dengue or yellow fever, lyme borreliosis or leishmaniasis, the leading causes of illness and death more than all others from the 17th to the 20th century.”

Graham says Papua New Guinea is by far Gazal’s largest market. For instance, in February 2010, the Group was approved by Mosquito Zone, an independent consultant to ExxonMobil LNG in Papua New Guineas, as a supplier of treated Insect Protection Clothing for three years.

According to Graham, 10 years since establishment of Bisley has grown to be the second largest Workwear brand in the Australian/New Zealand in volume sales. Gazal’s garment design is done in Sydney, with the global supply chain networks in the Americas, Bangladesh, mainland China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mongolia and Thailand.

Its outsourcing and quality control (QC) office located in Shanghai, China, enables the Group to effectively dispatch QC inspectors for product verification in any part of the world at the time of manufacture.


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