Strategic integrated projects

/sites/default/files/pictures/Nomonde%20Mnukwa%20.jpgBy Nomonde Mnukwa

It is often said that water is life, and this is indeed the case as no life can be sustained without water.  However, very few people give a second thought about the infrastructure required to ensure clean, drinkable water.

In South Africa government is undertaking a massive infrastructure investment and build programme in the form of Strategic Integrated Projects (SIPs), which are aimed at improving the quality of life for all South Africans.

Government is working to transform key sectors of our economy such as electricity, rail, ports and telecommunications through infrastructure. We are also working to rebuild and renew infrastructure in critical areas such as student accommodation, social housing water and sanitation.

Our focus on infrastructure is critical to driving economic growth and creating employment, while also ensuring that we can change lives and empower communities.

Over the medium-term the public sector is projected to spend R903 billion on infrastructure and a number of these projects have been completed, while many others are in the construction and procurement phases. In July 2020 a total of 62 Strategic Integrated Projects were gazetted that hold significant value in terms of growing our economy and driving development. These projects are currently being implemented across all three spheres of government, state-owned entities and the private sector.

Infrastructure in its most basic form is about bricks and mortar, but it is so much more than that.  Every new road built enhances mobility and creates economic activity for communities. New schools open up the doors of learning and progress, and new housing developments bring hope and dignity.

The Strategic Integrated Projects are breathing life into many sectors of the economy, including potentially new and game changing ones. South Africa has amassed a pipeline of Green Hydrogen Projects with a value of over R300 billion, which are in project preparation stages. Among these projects, is the Boegoebaai Green Hydrogen in the Northern Cape with a potential to progressively create around 35 000 work opportunities. 

Since the first round of SIPs were gazetted in 2022, an additional 26 have been added, bringing the number of gazetted SIPs to 88. These include infrastructure projects in energy, water and sanitation, transport as well as digital communications infrastructure. The SIPs also cover human settlements, agriculture, and agro-processing.

A number of projects to the value of R21.4 billion have already been completed covering roads, energy and human settlements, while the total value of projects currently in construction is R313.5 billion. A number of projects are also in the procurement stage to the value of  R295.2 billion.

There are various projects that have also been registered in the energy sector which once fully operational will assist in ensuring greater energy security for the country. The energy sector infrastructure project pipeline includes R180 billion of embedded generation investment.

Once all 88 SIPs are concluded there will be a massive increase in energy and water security. They will also further boost our Fourth Industrial Revolution ambitions and capabilities, while also ensuring that we provide homes, accommodation and revitalise the agricultural value chain.

Our investment in infrastructure is turning bricks and mortar into hope for a better tomorrow for all.  It is creating new frontiers of growth and progress and will ultimately ensure that we create the South Africa we want.