JOHANNESBURG - Mercedes Benz said on Friday it would spend R10 billion over the next five years expanding its South Africa plant in East London.

In a statement at the sidelines of the South Africa Investment Conference in Johannesburg, Mercedes said the investment was in preparation for its next generation C-class model.

The car maker said it intended to increase localisation and to have more local suppliers along its value chain.

Mercedes Benz has made local products in South Africa for the last 60 years.

Many other companies made investment commitments during the conference. 

Rwanda-based technology company Mara Corporation said on Friday is was investing $100 million in South Africa to make affordable, high tech smartphones.

Paper and timber companies Sappi and Mondi on Friday announced multi-billion rand investments into South Africa to support goverment efforts at reigniting economic growth. Sappi chief executive Stephen Binnie said the world's largest producer of dissolving pulp would plough R7.7 billion into its Durban mill.

 Anglo American plc on Friday announced that it would be investing R71.5 billion into the South African economy over five years through extending the lives of its operations, the single biggest investment in the mining industry currently. 

Delegates at the inaugural SA Investment Conference convened by President Cyril Ramaphosa. PHOTO: Government Communication and Information System (GCIS)

- African News Agency (ANA)