- Five diamond cutting and polishing companies established since Dubai Expo 2020
- Lobatse Clay Works to be fully operational in August
- Companies facilitated by SPEDU 2 835 jobs to-date
- Progress in implementation of Special Economic Zones Reform noted
- PVC tanks and pipes, ignition wiring sets, vet medicines, hair braids, coal, towels and T-shirts, automobile batteries have expanded exports
A cumulative P2.22 billion in foreign direct investment (FDI) was achieved by Botswana through the agency of Botswana Investment and Trade Centre (BITC), the Minister of Trade and Investment, Mmusi Kgafela, told the Committee of Supply in Parliament recently.
A total of P1.44 billion worth of domestic investment and expansions was achieved during the same period. “Similarly, BITC assisted companies recorded export sales worth P4 billion,” the minister noted.
“The main export products driving export performance in 2022 included PVC tanks and pipes, ignition wiring sets, veterinary medicines, hair braids, coal, textiles (towels and T-shirts) and automobile batteries.
“For the same period, local companies were able to penetrate new markets with existing products. These new markets are Zimbabwe, Namibia, Mozambique, Kuwait, the Central African Republic, Korea Republic, and Switzerland.”
Furthermore, said Kgafela, Botswana’s participation at the Dubai Expo 2020 has generated several business leads. “So far, BITC has facilitated the setting up of five companies in the diamond cutting and polishing industry from the Expo,” he noted. “To-date, the realised cumulative investments from these companies is P176 950 000.”
Minister Kgafela said Botswana Development Corporation (BDC) continues to support its subsidiary companies. “A total of P355.6 million in disbursements was made in alignment with BDC’s strategic intent,” he noted. “Companies assisted are as follows: Delta Automotive Technologies Botswana and Lobatse Clay Works.
Lobatse Clay Works
“It should be noted that through these efforts, Lobatse Clay Works is being resuscitated since ceasing operation in 2017. It will be fully operational towards the end of August 2023.”
Regarding the Selebi-Phikwe Diversification Unit Company (SPEDU), the minister said it continues to facilitate high impact projects in terms of investment value, job creation, contribution to reduction of the import bill and food security.
“So far, SPEDU has facilitated 147 companies, of which 83 are at an advanced stage of development,” he noted. “The companies have cumulatively created 2 835 jobs to-date.”
Kgafela said there is notable progress in implementation of the Special Economic Zones (SEZ) Reform. “Progress is being made with respect to the development of enabling legislative frameworks meant to advance the SEZ Reform,” he stated.
Special Economic Zones
“To-date the Special Economic Zones Authority (SEZA) has licensed nine investors in the mineral beneficiation, automotive, Information and Communication Technology (ICT), renewable energy, manufacturing and agriculture sectors.”
Meanwhile, BITC was established by an Act of Parliament in 2012 as an integrated Investment and Trade Promotion Authority (ITPA) with the mandate encompassing investment promotion and attraction, export promotion and development, and management of the National Brand.