Issue: Jan 2006


Austrian automotive investors to Coega



by Ed Richardson

A GROUP of potential investors representing 11 Austrian automotive companies will visit the Coega industrial development zone on Thursday as part of a mission to look at possible future expansion sites for the sector in South Africa.

Led by the Commercial Counsellor of the Austrian Embassy in South Africa, Stefan Pistauer, the group will also visit local vehicle manufacturers Volkswagen and General Motors.

Pistauer said the main aim of the visit was to explore future business opportunities with South African companies. 'These Austrian companies are also looking at possible future investments in the country,' he said.

Pistauer said Austrian companies were interested in investment opportunities in South Africa, and one company was already in the process of setting up operations in the Durban area.

'I foresee an increased interest in the South African market from Austrian companies, because of the growth prospects of the motor industry,' he said.

Half of Austria's exports were with the South African motor sector, and 'this is likely to grow over the years, considering the kind of interest that our companies have in South Africa.' The general director of the automotive cluster in Austria, Uwe Galler, is part of the delegation. Although excited about the visit, he admitted that it would not be easy to find investment opportunities.

'Even though we know that it is not going to be easy, we are prepared to take the challenge, because we know that there are lots of things to consider when one is looking for an investment location,' said Galler.

Other countries that the delegation has already visited are China and the US.

For six of these companies, this will be their first visit to South Africa


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