(In the pic - President Zuma with Minister Davies unveiling the plague.) President Jacob Zuma joined by Minister of Trade Rob Davies, Minister Patel, Minister Gigaba and the Premier of Western Cape Hellen Zille officially launched the Saldanha Bay Industrial Development Zone in the Western Cape. 31/10/2013, Elmond Jiyane, GCIS

Cape Town - Poor coloureds and whites living on South Africa's west coast must benefit from the Saldanha Bay industrial development zone, the FFPlus said on Thursday.

“The opening of the Saldanha Bay industrial development zone today 1/8Thursday 3/8 is welcomed by the Freedom Front Plus,” its Western Cape leader Corne Mulder said in a statement.

“But, it is important that the poor white and traditional coloured communities will also be favoured with regards to the approximate 12 000 job opportunities that the development is expected to create.”

President Jacob Zuma opened the zone on Thursday, and said the project would create about 20 000 jobs over 20 years, and was expected to generate about R62 billion in foreign exchange.

Saldanha Bay is a natural harbour about 130km north of Cape Town.

The industrial zone is aimed at boosting economic activity in Saldanha Bay and the surrounding areas, mainly in the oil and gas industries.

It is one of 18 projects the presidential infrastructure co-ordinating commission has identified across the country.

Mulder said the development could bring good news to traditional west coast fishing communities, as thousands of people were struggling to make a living due to the area's poor economic development.

“The situation can drastically change now with the investment of billions of rand from government as well as local and international investors,” he said.

“It is, however, very important that the white and traditional coloured people from the area form part of the economic recovery.”

Sapa