Thursday, June 4, 2020

New broom at SEZA

The Minister of Trade, Industry and Investment, Peggy Serame has confirmed the appointment of the Special Economic Zones Authority (SEZA) Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Lonely Mogara this week.

Serame stated the process was a transparent one to identify the SEZA CEO where Mogara emerged the best candidate.

SEZA Board Chairman, Thapelo Tsheole also confirmed Moraga’s appointment and stated that the new CEO is tasked with improving the investment climate in the country which has not been conducive.

 FormerSEZA Director of Policy and Planning, Mogara is expected to officially assume his new role 1st April 2020, after he excelled from the job interview and managed to outdo the SEZA Acting CEO Thatayaone Ndzinge.

Currently the entity has managed to identify 8 economic zones and already work has already kick started. The zones will act as a relief to the existing shortages of commercial and industrial land. This is in line with improving land management as it means that it will it make it available to those who can make productive use of it.  

The newly appointed CEO Mogara is expected to turn Botswana into a production hub and reduce being a consumer economy. The entity has already acquired land for all the eight zones  with Fairgrounds having 50 hectares, Palapye 440 hectares, Francistown 700 hectares, Selibe Phikwe 1100 hectares, Pandamatenga 17000 hectares, Tuli Block 400 hectares SSKIA 800 hectares and Lobatse 200 hectares.

SEZA recently awarded a P100 million project to Bothakga Burrow for the detailed design, infrastructure development and construction of Boulevard 1 Road at its flagship Sir Seretse Khama International Airport (SSKIA) Special Economic Zone (SEZ). 

SSKIA has been zoned as a 900 hectare mixed use SEZ with core activities being diamond beneficiation, aerospace and aviation, cargo, freight, logistics, agro-processing, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, engineering & electronic equipment, specialist automotive and plastics injection moulding. 

Phase 1 of the project will cover the first 90 hectares and will basically be the size of the Central Business District (CBD). It will also incorporate the Innovation Hub and the Diamond Hub as it is adjacent to key institutions like Diamond Trading Centre Botswana (DTCB) and Botswana Innovation Hub (BIH)’s Science and Technology Park

Ndzinge while acting had previously revealed that there is a delicate process of balancing the needs of the nation (FDI attraction, Export development) with the design and delivery of their SEZs as per best practice.

The Special Economic Zones Authority was established through an Act of Parliament in 2015. It operates as an authority through the Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry. It is responsible for overall coordination and implementation of activities related to the establishment and development of Special Economic Zones (SEZs).

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