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By Roy Cokayne

Moneyweb: Freelance journalist

R670-million investment boosts Tshwane Automotive City development

The YFPO investment in the new factory is expected to create between 340 and 360 new jobs.

Development of the multi-billion-rand Tshwane Automotive City (TAC) is gaining momentum following the installation of bulk infrastructure at its centre, and commencement of the 700 000m2 Rosslyn Hub mixed-use development.

Yanfeng Plastic Omnium South Africa (YFPO) – a joint venture between China-based Yanfeng and French company Plastic Omnium – has invested R670 million in a new 26 000m2 factory in Rosslyn Hub (Pty) Ltd’s industrial precinct in the logistics node of the TAC.

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YFPO plant manager Schalk van der Berg said this week it is the first investment outside mainland China by Yanfeng, the biggest global supplier of painted automotive plastic injection moulding exterior components.

Hein Ferreira, business manager for YFPO SA, said the plant is currently operating only a single shift but will move to three shifts in September and eventually produce 342 car kits a day for BMW.

Tshwane Automotive City takes shape, unlocks billions in investments
The new R67m YFPO factory at Tshwane Automotive City. Image: Moneyweb

BMW SA announced last year that it will be investing R4.2 billion over five years to prepare its manufacturing plant in Rosslyn for production of the next generation BMW X3 plug-in hybrid from the second half of 2024.

The YFPO investment in the new factory is expected to create between 340 and 360 new jobs.

City takes shape

Deputy Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition (dtic) Fikile Majola led a ribbon cutting ceremony at the TAC this week to celebrate the completion of critical bulk infrastructure for the initial development of the TAC.

The masterplan for the 7 157 hectare Tshwane Automotive City development was approved by the City of Tshwane in 2019 and has three priority nodes:

  • A logistics node;
  • A community and civic node; and
  • A commercial and recreational node.

Brendan Falkson, a director of Rosslyn Hub, a catalytic development for the TAC, said a total of R65 million has been invested in bulk infrastructure in the TAC, largely on roads and stormwater systems.

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Falkson said the dtic contributed 30% of the cost of the qualifying bulk infrastructure through its Critical Infrastructure Programme and Rosslyn Hub the balance.

Majola said the Critical Infrastructure Programme aims to leverage investment by supporting infrastructure that is deemed to be critical, thus lowering the cost of doing business.

Inland port, new dual carriageway

“We have enabled access to the proposed inland port and assisted in the provincial road intersection upgrades in preparation for the new K217 dual carriageway road,” said Majola.

He added that the K217 will connect Rosslyn and Soshanguve to the N4 highway, which will help connect Rosslyn to Silverton and BMW and Nissan to Ford, in line with the TAC masterplan.

“Importantly, this road will enable the logistics hub and inland port required for the auto industry to be linked directly to the N4 highway and then the N1 highway for efficient road transport into Africa,” said Majola.

“This will assist in positioning Tshwane as the automotive manufacturing capital for Africa, in support of BMW, Nissan and Ford’s export ambitions.

“In addition, the inland port will connect to Transnet’s freight line in Rosslyn, which will link to Ford in Silverton, and then to either the Port of Durban or Port of Gqeberha, to assist in moving additional automotive freight from road to rail, a key component in achieving export efficiencies.”

Priority nodes set to create close to 60 000 jobs

Falkson said the three priority nodes in the TAC are expected to attract around R42 billion worth of investment and create about 59 513 jobs over the next 10 to 15 years.

He said it will result in a significant change in the landscape of Rosslyn and provide the focus for the development of the TAC in the region.

Rosslyn Hub is developing the commercial and recreational node, as well as the logistics precinct in the logistics node, comprising five industrial sites apart from YFPO’s site.

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Falkson said the completed infrastructure has also unlocked additional development phases in Rosslyn Hub, which is 26% owned by Black Management Forum Investments and the balance by individual shareholders.

Retail, recreation, residential

He said planned developments by Rosslyn Hub in the commercial and recreational node incorporate all the mixed uses that were missing from Rosslyn to create an auto city.

This includes:

  • A 15 000m2 shopping centre anchored by Shoprite Checkers and value retail as well as a service station, with the infrastructure for the shopping centre expected to be completed by the end of this year;
  • An 80 to 100-bed private hospital that will be operated by a listed company, with construction hopefully commencing by the end of 2025 once licensing approval has been obtained;
  • High-density residential, comprising a total of 580 affordable rental apartments that will be built in two phases, with construction expected to commence in 2025; and
  • A 10MW solar plant, with the start of construction dependent on agreement on the commercial terms and the finalisation of wheeling agreements.

Falkson said these developments will use about 50% of Rosslyn Hub’s available land in the TAC, with the remaining land potentially used for a regional shopping centre and conference facility as well as a secure industrial park.


Alfred Rohrs, department manager of special programmes at the Automotive Industry Development Centre (AIDC), said on Thursday the logistics node, supported by a proposed Inland Port Precinct Plan, focuses on the north-western side of Rosslyn, which currently contains the Rosslyn Automotive Supplier Park and BMW’s Vehicle Distribution Centre (VDC).

Rohrs said public participation for the adoption of the Inland Port Precinct Plan closed in March.

He said proposed projects within the plan include:

  • The Rosslyn Inland Port as an anchor project, with the feasibility study in progress;
  • Construction of the proposed K217 link road, with the final design in progress by the Gauteng Department of Roads and Transport;
  • Facilities for additional automotive suppliers; and
  • Additional vehicle distribution centres.

Rohrs said the proposed inland port aims to be the main automotive consolidated freight terminal in Rosslyn and located 200 metres away from the main Transnet Freight Rail (TFR) line that runs from Rustenburg to Pyramid South and all the way to Richards Bay, Durban or Gqeberha.

“This anchor project aims to develop an auto-centric inland dry port on 60 hectares of a larger land parcel belonging to the City of Tshwane and the AIDC,” he said.

Rohrs said the inland port will:

  • Provide the automotive industry with a more predictable and reliable service and costs to the sector’s supply chain;
  • Create opportunity to bring on board participation of black-owned entities in the value chain; and
  • Enable the sector to shift from road to rail transport, which will alleviate road congestion and mitigate high cycle times by increasing wagon capacity.

He said proposed sub projects include a container terminal and vehicle distribution centre with a solar rooftop.

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Rohrs added that the AIDC, together with the Gauteng Infrastructure Financing Agency, appointed a transactional advisory team in 2023 to conduct a treasury-compliant feasibility study for the development of the inland port, which is in progress and due for completion in the second half of 2024.

He said progress on the civic and community node is currently limited to project identification in line with the civic and community precinct plan adopted by the City of Tshwane.

“We hope to announce the first projects within this year,” he said.

This article was republished from Moneyweb. Read the original here

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