Sumitomo Rubber South Africa chief executive Riaz Haffejee with Dunlop Container Tyre Fitment Centre owner Isaac Ntaba.
DURBAN - In an effort to drive sustainable township entrepreneurship, Sumitomo Rubber South Africa (SRSA) has partnered with the provincial economic development department and Ithala Development Finance Corporation to launch tyre fitment centres across KwaZulu-Natal.

The partnership will see a minimum of 25 containerised tyre fitment operations established, creating employment for approximately 100 youth, women and enterprising entrepreneurs.

Speaking at the recent launch of Isaac’s Tyres, the newest Dunlop Container business in Gamalakhe township on KZN South Coast recently, Economic Development Tourism and Environmental Affairs (EDTEA) MEC Sihle Zikalala said: “We want to thank Sumitomo Rubber for lending a hand in the fight that the government is leading against unemployment and especially the unemployment of our youth. We recognise that we cannot grow the economy without the private sector, and we thank SRSA for investing in our province.”

“SRSA and the Dunlop Brand have a proud legacy of supporting economic growth, upliftment and development in South Africa,” said Riaz Haffejee, chief executive of SRSA.

“We were the first local tyre manufacturer in the country to partner with rural and township areas to encourage community development in the tyre fitment enterprise.

“We believe that it is through initiatives such as this that we will see a reduction in the unemployment rates in our communities, in KZN - and in South Africa as a whole,” said Haffejee.

There are more than 122 Dunlop containers across nine provinces and to date, the partnership with KZN EDTEA and iThala has resulted in six container businesses being awarded in KwaZulu-Natal - in Port Shepstone, Estcourt, Ladysmith, Madadeni, Esikhaleni and Eshowe.

Haffejee said the company was proud to be playing a part in building sustainable businesses in townships.

THE MERCURY