The Minister of Trade and Industry Dr Rob Davies has welcomed the R120 million investment by the United State- based multinational company, 3M to expand its operations in South Africa. 3M is a science and technology company that produces thousands of imaginative products, and are the leader in scores of markets - from consumer, safety and graphics, electronics and energy, healthcare and industrial.
According to Minister Davies, the investment is a major boost for the manufacturing sector as the enhancement is designed to improve productivity and will position the Maple Park plant in Pamona, Kempton Park as one of the globally competitive locations within 3M.
"Such investment is important and demonstrates the confidence that 3M has in the long term future of South Africa as a regional manufacturing hub," says Davies.
He highlights that with its commitment to South Africa spanning over 60 years, global science and technology leader 3M recently invested a R120-million into increasing its production efficiency in the automotive and scourer manufacturing sectors of its business, ensuring even greater support for local customers.
The Managing Director of 3M South Africa, Mr Ismail Mapara says the company was pleased to host the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) at their Maple Park operations and believes that the investment in manufacturing and the creation of new jobs further cements their history in South Africa and commitment to the same growth and skills upliftment initiatives that the dti promotes.
"Our $500 000 Automotive Line investment offers 3M customers the high quality products and service they expect, but with even more agility now that we are able to manufacture our film products for the industry with only a to-scale drawing of the vehicle," says Mapara.
He adds that the fully-automated scourer production line comprises bespoke equipment tailor-made for the South African market and built in the within country with the support of local and international 3M engineers.
"The US $800 000 scourer production technology ranks as among the best in the world, and is now the fastest line in the 3M network," he adds.
Mapara says to ensure both operational safety and efficiency; 3M are employing experienced resources from within the industry while developing skills among new employees. He adds that the new investments in Maple Park will create jobs for an additional 75 skilled individuals, with more opportunities arising across the company due to the extension of 3M's domestic operations.