Trade and Industry

Saturday, 02 January 2021

Post COVID-19 industrial development projects: Polylactic acid (bioplastics)

  • Year: 2020
  • Organisation: TIPS
  • Author(s): Sandy Lowitt (TIPS)
  • Countries and Regions: South Africa

As South Africa responds to COVID-19 and aims to stimulate the economy and job creation post lockdown, an opportunity should not be missed to consider investing in new product markets which could increase the size and dynamism of the manufacturing sector. Such a package could contribute to arresting the trend of deindustrialisation and shift the trajectory of the industrial base into new, sustainable growth areas and value chains. This would result in new factories, new downstream demand for primary and intermediate inputs, new export products, increased foreign exchange earnings, and new direct and indirect long-term jobs.

Using the idea of “business unusual” TIPS economists put together a Post COVID-19 recovery programme that could provide the impetus to arrest the trend of deindustrialisation and herald the beginning of a new generation of industrial activity. The study comprises a main consolidated report and the seven initial projects that have been identified, including this one on Polylactic acid (bioplastics). This project looks at supporting the sugar industry through the domestic production of polylactic acid for export and downstream domestic value addition.

Download a copy or read online Project three: Polylactic acid (bioplastics)

Main report and other projects

Main consolidated report: Industrial development projects

Project one: Borehole drilling rigs

Project two: Industrial hemp

Project four: Containerised short sea shipping service

Project five: Alternative fuel

Project six: Furfural and furfuryl alcohol plant (biochemicals) 

Project seven: Motocycle components