A recent analysis conducted by KPMG to determine the economic and financial viability of the Cornubia development north of Durban shows that it holds an unquestionable benefit to the city, its people and the economy.
The proposed mixed-use development has been earmarked as a strategic project that will have a significant impact on the social, economic and industrial prospects of the region. These prospects have now been quantified following the cost benefit and macroeconomic impact analysis conducted by the accounting and auditing firm.
Appointed by the eThekwini Municipality, KPMG was tasked with determining if the project represents a sound investment or decision, as well as providing a basis for comparing projects on the basis of their costs relative to their benefits.
“As important as the economic and financial considerations are, the Cornubia development is regarded as a catalytic intervention undertaken jointly by the eThekwini Municipality and Tongaat Hulett Property to establish the first fully integrated human settlement in the country,” states Denny Thaver, Project Manager at eThekwini Municipality.
The development has a large impact on job creation in eThekwini during both the construction and operational phases. In the long term, nearly 285 000 new employment opportunities will be created due to the commercial activities associated with Cornubia, representing a healthy 12% of total employment in the province. This will be achieved through 39000 direct jobs, 144000 indirect jobs, and an additional 45 000 jobs in the rest of the province, as well as 54 000 jobs resulting from the economic impact of salaries and wages paid to employees at the development.
These jobs exclude the 250 000 employment opportunities expected to be created during the construction phase of Cornubia, representing 20% of the total employment in eThekwini (over a 20-year period). This phase of the project will pump as much as R700 million into lower income households through job creation opportunities, which nearly doubles to R1.3 billion in income for these households during the operational phase of the development.
The construction phase alone will also contribute roughly R8.5 billion to the economy of eThekwini, representing 4% of the local economy’s GDP. Once operational, Cornubia will contribute approximately R3.3 billion directly to the local economy, with the provincial GDP being boosted by an estimated R1.2 billion.
“Apart from the direct economic stimulus provided by the Cornubia development, the social impact from the construction of affordable, subsidised and public sector housing units will go a long way to improving the quality of living for local residents. Coupled with the job opportunities that are being created, the overall impact on the prospects and attractiveness of eThekwini will be significantly improved,” concludes Denny Thaver.