The Department of Public Works and Infrastructure, the National Treasury, and the Development Bank of Southern Africa have signed a Memorandum of Agreement for the establishment of the Infrastructure Fund.
The Infrastructure Fund will provide support for the co-financing of projects and programmes that blend public and private resources. The government believes a trillion rand can be catalysed from the private sector to drive the fund.
The government has made a provision of R100 billion for the infrastructure fund which will be spread out over a 10-year period. Director General at National Treasury, Dondo Mogajane, says R10 billion has already been set aside for this year.
“The R10 billion is there, no good project is going to be left unfunded. If it’s good, it’s got all the right ticks, it will create jobs; it will ensure that private sector participants come on board. It will ensure that tax revenues are going to come, later on, it will be funded.”
Mogajane says while unsolicited proposals will be accepted, systems have been put in place to ensure that the procurement process around the fund is not compromised.
“The process should be fair, should be transparent, should be competitive and we must get the best value for government in this case, so everyone will be expected to participate openly so. There will be a tender process; there will be an adjudication process that will be over-board. We are not in any way going to accept whether it’s the corrupter or the corruptee to come into this space.”
Chief Executive Officer of the Development Bank of Southern Africa, Patrick Dlamini, says internet connectivity in rural areas, road infrastructure, and school accommodation are just some of the pipeline projects that will be funded through the infrastructure fund.
So far, over 50 projects, which will be supported through the fund, have been gazetted. “Student accommodation is also one of the projects that are also undergoing project preparation and again you have universities, you have TVETs and their spread across the country, so that will ensure that we’re not blue ticking villages and towns because these will be right there where they are. Also, we have SA connect terrestrial network as well as the satellite network, so the infrastructure is going to be available to everyone in South Africa at a competitive price.”
The DBSA will be responsible for establishing and managing the Infrastructure Fund while Treasury is expected to put in place defined budgeting processes for the Fund.