08 September 2023

The federal government goals to scale back congestion and delays at South Africa’s busiest border posts with the assistance of the non-public sector.

Of South Africa’s 53 border posts with neighbouring nations, the six busiest have been earmarked for upgrades via cooperation between the state and the non-public sector.

The improve mission for Beitbridge, Lebombo, Maseru Bridge, Ficksburg, Kopfontein and Oshoek will embrace changing outdated expertise to higher fight smuggling and make it harder for criminals to cross the border unnoticed. Commerce with neighbouring nations can also be anticipated to enhance.

The upgrades have been beforehand introduced by Aaron Motsoaledi, the Minister of House Affairs, however he offered extra particulars on Wednesday. 

He invited the non-public sector to participate within the tender course of and mentioned additional data can be offered on September 27.

“The principle goal is to make it simpler for law-abiding people and corporations to enter and exit South Africa via our border posts, whereas curbing the unlawful motion of individuals and items,” Motsoaledi mentioned.

“This name for proposals primarily seeks a partnership between the federal government and the non-public sector to revitalise the infrastructure and expertise at our border posts.”

Outdated expertise aids criminals

Motsoaledi mentioned a few of the expertise used at border posts to examine autos, comparable to X-ray machines, is just not efficient sufficient and must be changed.

He mentioned the tactic used to examine cargo means some vans transport unlawful items comparable to cigarettes, alcohol and even individuals unnoticed via the border posts.

“On December 5, 2020, a truckload of brooms arrived on the Lebombo border submit with the intention of transporting the cargo to Mozambique,” he mentioned.

“Inspection of the truck was performed, and below the heap of brooms, a brand-new Ford Ranger was observed at the back of the truck. Additional investigation revealed that the automobile was stolen on November 30, 2020, in Sandton.”

Motsoaledi mentioned higher expertise, comparable to gamma-ray machines able to figuring out something from unlawful cigarettes and alcohol to paper cash and other people, are among the many mandatory upgrades.

“The first goal of the mission is to make sure the achievement of regional financial integration within the Southern African Growth Neighborhood (SADC), whereas facilitating the realisation of the African Continental Free Commerce Space (AfCFTA).”

The mission would later be expanded to different border posts.

Apartheid-era border posts detrimental to commerce

Motsoaledi mentioned South Africa’s border posts have been designed through the apartheid period with the purpose of enhancing nationwide safety. “Within the course of, the efficient promotion of regional and worldwide commerce was uncared for.”

If some border posts have been in comparison with their counterparts on the opposite facet of the border, South Africa’s appear to be “casual settlements, whereas the opposite facet seems like Sandton”, he mentioned.

 “Because the introduction of democracy, there was an exponential enhance within the variety of individuals transferring between South Africa and the nations within the SADC area. 

“The amount of regional and worldwide commerce has additionally elevated. Consequently, South African border posts are congested and proceed to suppress commerce as an alternative of creating it extra accessible.”

Motsoaledi particularly referred to the Lebombo border submit between South Africa and Mozambique, the place cargo vans await hours on the N4 to go via.


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