Aspen’s PE plant to create 500 jobs

Minister Rob Davies with Stephen Saad, CEO of ASPEN, at the launch of a high containment facility in Port Elizabeth.
Minister Rob Davies with Stephen Saad, CEO of ASPEN, at the launch of a high containment facility in Port Elizabeth.
Image: Supplied

Minister Davies lauds the R1bn investment Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies recently launched Aspen’s R1-billion high containment facility which will create over 500 jobs in Port Elizabeth.

The facility was established as a result of a partnership between the Department of Trade and Industry and Aspen.

Davies said this was a significant investment which will take South Africa into a new level of manufacturing.

“If we look at the pharmaceutical industry, South Africa’s population is the largest consumer of pharmaceutical products. When we look at some of these statistics, I think we can see that there are huge challenges in that we have a huge trade deficit of around R20-billion,” said Davies.

“This means we import R20-billion of pharmaceutical products than we export.”

He said the manufacturing of pharmaceutical goods contributes about 0.48% of South Africa’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), which plays a small but very significant part in the economy, and employs about 9600 people.

“When we look at the manufacturing value chains in the world, South Africa will be better off if we are involved in the production of value-added products, even if it is just basic manufacturing, than simply importing.”

Group chief executive of Aspen, Stephen Saad, said the company is a serial investor in the South African pharmaceutical industry.

“We are pleased that over 90% of the jobs that will be created in the new facility will be local jobs mostly drawn from surrounding communities such as New Brighton township.

“These employees will go on to become world-class and highly skilled people that can hold their own anywhere and in most facilities globally.” – GCIS- VUK'UZENZELE

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