- The tower sections for the 140 MW Kangnas and the 110Mw Perdekraal East Wind Farm are being manufactured a Spanish company GRI at the Atlantis Special Economic Zone (SEZ), in the Western Cape.
- The area if Atlantis lies 60km north west of Cape Town and is confronted by many problems including high unemployment, poverty and drug abuse.
- The Spanish company GRI
The tower sections for the 140 MW Kangnas and the Perdekraal East Wind Farm are being manufactured locally by GRI, a Spanish wind tower manufacturer, at the Atlantis Special Economic Zone (SEZ), in the Western Cape.
The move signals the recovery of the Special Economic Zone that had been set up for green technologies, which according to Green Cape, has already attracted R680-million in green technology investments and has created over 300 jobs.
The area if Atlantis lies 60km north west of Cape Town and is confronted by many problems including high unemployment, poverty and drug abuse.
It is expected that the SEZ will attract a further R3.7-billion of investment by renewable energy and other manufacturers. Approximately 3 000 jobs are expected to be created by 2030 if these investments are realised.
Two wind farms will be receiving their turbine tower sections from GRI which has invested R475-million to date, and was one of the first to see the benefits of establishing a factory at the Atlantis SEZ.
Even prior to designation of the SEZ, GRI had made the most of the City of Cape Town’s available infrastructure and rapid land release and approvals processes to secure their chosen ground.
GRI weathered the storm of the three year REIPPPP delays and were able to ramp up to full operations again after confirming contracts in the fourth bid window, which includes Kangnas Wind Farm and Perdekraal East Wind Farm.
“GRI’s South African wind tower company is 25% owned by local shareholders, while their 250 or so employees have benefited from skills transfer, some [receiving]training and experience in Spain and the US, and bringing their skills back to the community,” explained GreenCape SEZ project executive Francis Jackson.
The Atlantis Green Technology SEZ was a deliberate effort to create manufacturing, broadly in the green economy and with specific opportunities in renewables.
Author: Bryan Groenendaal