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SOUTH Africa, and more specifically the Eastern Cape, will benefit from the exciting partnership opportunities identified between the Coega Development Corporation (CDC) and Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU).

This follows a seminar this week between the two key players in Nelson Mandela Bay, facilitated by the University to find areas of overlap.

The metro’s pro-active approach towards the government’s Operation Phakisa, aimed at realizing the economic potential of the country’s oceans, was one major area in which the industrial development zone giant and the Eastern Cape’s largest university will collaborate.

Oil and gas, aquaculture, maritime manufacturing, skills development and port integration and planning are some of the areas where the two parties will deepen their relations and take the metro forward.

“We have definite strengths in this area. Nelson Mandela Bay is the first metro in South Africa to take a stand and seriously stake a claim towards supporting Operation Phakisa,” NMMU Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research and Engagement Prof Andrew Leitch told delegates at the morning-long seminar.

His cries of ensuring that the University and Coega become “catalysts and enablers” in working together to “remain relevant” were echoed time and again by eight different Coega presenters.

Apart from the drive towards a “blue economy” which the University is championing in terms of research and skills capacity development, the other major areas of collaboration included the energy and manufacturing sectors.

The information session by the Coega presenters provided an overview of all that has been achieved to date and shared extensive future plans valued at millions of rands that will create thousands of jobs and make the Eastern Cape a viable player in the national economy.

Synergies emerged as the parties’ identified various opportunities ranging from internships to research capacity towards a shared vision of building a better future for the province and country.       

The two players already have a formalised relationship, but this will vastly expanded as the areas of mutual overlap are added to the present list of partnerships. 

Contact information
Prof Andrew Leitch
Executive Dean: Faculty of Science
Tel: +27 41 5042219