BUSINESS REPORT (Pretoria News) Page 17
THE STRATEGIC Projects Fund (SPF) of the National Empowerment Fund' (NEF) has projects in the pipeline estimated at R30 billion, with the potential to create up to 200 000 jobs in the next five years. This is according to the NEF's chief executive, Philisiwe Buthelezi, who spoke at the Businesswomen's Association's Achiever Awards in Johannesburg last week. The SPF was established to boost the participation of black people in early stage projects aligned with government policy. Zweli Sapula, the head of the SPF, said the fund currently supported 28 deals and was evaluating others. These were mainly plants in key sectors of the government's Industrial Policy Action Plan (Ipap), although those falling outside Ipap would not be denied funding. Sapula gave examples of some of the projects.