The Acting Deputy Director-General responsible for industrial development at the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti)Ms Thandi Phele has welcomed the investment by Rolls-Royce at South African Airways Technical (SAAT). Phele welcomed the investment during the opening of Rolls-Royce’s first lease engine storage facility in Africa today.
“This partnership between Rolls-Royce and SAAT is critical in many respects. It will not only allow SAAT the ability to store engines this facility in compliance with engine manual requirements of Rolls-Royce; but equips it with the capability and capacity to offer technical support on a full range of Rolls-Royce engine types to meet the requirements of airline and jet customers based or operating in Africa. This is key for South Africa as an investment destination in Africa,” said Phele.
According to Phele, the facility that will be based within the SAAT site at Johannesburg’s Oliver Tambo International Airport is incredible as the partnership is strategic and would support the economic development in South Africa and the rest of the African continent.
“We appreciate the training programme that will be provided to SAAT staff to enable them to conduct work on engines in storage; and in future will be capable of performing a range of inspection and on-wing services to Rolls-Royce customers in Africa,” said Phele.
Phele further said that South Africa has a strong focus on improving investor and consumer confidence by fast-tracking structural reforms and higher levels of investment for economic growth. This, she said requires partnerships between government, business and labour which are critical in boosting investor confidence levels.
“There cannot be National Industrial Participation Programme (NIPP) without the partnership with international equipment manufacturers such as Rolls-Royce. As a country we will benefit much from Rolls-Royce technical know-how. We appreciate the training programme that will be provided to SAAT staff to enable them to conduct work on engines in storage; and in future will be capable of performing a range of inspection and on-wing services to Rolls-Royce customers in Africa. Going forward, we want to partner more on technology transfer and; research and development in the aspects of engine maintenance, said Phele. We believe that SAAT is perfectly positioned to be able to support these customers, and we look forward to a long and lasting relationship with Rolls-Royce, said Phele.
“The opening of this facility marks the start of a journey that will see SAAT play an expanding role in our development of availability services across Africa as it increases its capability. We have worked closely with South African Airways for a number of years, and we are delighted to be working with them on this initiative,” said the Vice President Customers Africa Rolls-Royce, Mr Kevin Evans.
The NIPP, as a lever of government procurement is a policy aimed at creating mutually beneficial partnerships and leveraging opportunities to develop industrial domestic capabilities that will drive industrialisation towards the fulfilment of job creation and economic growth