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KZN Northern Growth Corridor (KNGC)


The KwaZulu-Natal Province can be seen as the eastern trade gateway of Southern Africa, with Durban being the busiest container port in Africa and Richards Bay housing the biggest bulk cargo port in Africa.

Between these two seaports, the Dube Tradeport, adjacent to King Shaka International Airport, now operates as an air logistics platform allowing Durban to access even more global trade opportunities. These two ports have attracted enormous capital investments and the related infrastructure thus far.

The significant development that is underway on the North coast of KZN is the focus of what has been defined as the KZN Northern Growth Corridor (“KNGC”).

The KNGC area is the coastal zone stretching up the N2 from Durban in the South through Richards Bay and up to the Mozambique border. It covers the district municipalities of eThekwini (Durban), iLembe (Ballito and Stanger), uThungulu (Richards Bay) and uMkhanyakude (Mkuze).
The areas of particular interest within this Corridor are:

  • Cornubia
  • Dube TradePort
  • ILembe
  • Richards Bay

Hover over the region to display its district statistics as at 2011.

KNGC areas of interest


A multi-billion rand project, Cornubia, is expected to alter the skyline of Umhlanga in the future. Cornubia will be the home of the next major industrial area, some 15kms south of the new King Shaka International airport.

The development is proposed to provide some 24 000 homes of which 15 000 are proposed for subsidised housing (by the Municipality in partnership with the Province) and the balance for a wide range of affordability levels.

The planning of Cornubia is based upon the principles of sustainable development, a wide range and integration of income levels, employment and economic opportunities, provision for schools, clinics and other social facilities.

The development is strategically located between the historically created and disadvantaged areas of Phoenix, Ottawa and Waterloo and newer areas of Mt Edgecombe and Umhlanga and has been planned to integrate these very different and disparate communities in a manner which adds value and enhances linkages and opportunities to all.

Dube TradePort

Dube TradePort, located 30 km north of Durban, is a catalyst for global trade and a portal between KwaZulu-Natal and the world. It is the only facility in Africa that brings together an international airport, a state-of-the-art cargo terminal; and an agrizone, a 20-hectare development for flower and vegetable production. Located 30 km north of Durban, Dube TradePort is positioned between the two biggest sea ports in Southern Africa, and linked to the rest of Africa by road and rail.


iLembe District Municipality situated about 65km north of Durban is endowed with a wealth of rich, fertile soil and has comparatively good rainfall – more than 1 000mm a year – making agriculture and hence iLembe central to the KZN economy.

iLembe is recognized for its sugar-cane plantations and subtropical fruit along the coastal belt. The farmers in the hinterland concentrate on vegetable, dairy and stock-farming while the areas of Vryheid and Eshowe are known for forestry and furniture manufacturing.

Richards Bay

Richards Bay is considered the centre of operations for South Africa's aluminium industry. Richards Bay Minerals is the largest sand-mining and mineral-processing operation in the world while The Richards Bay Coal Terminal is instrumental in securing the country's position as the second-largest exporter of steam coal in the world. Richards Bay also has a designated Industrial Development Zone focused on economic development in the export market.

Featured Insights

Public Private Partnership  

Public Private Partnership

Accelerating development of education infrastructure in KZN development zone

The KZN Northern Growth Corridor, which stretches along the N2 between the strategic South African ports of Durban and Richards Bay, and incorporates the Dube Tradeport (King Shaka International Airport and neighbouring business hub), could be decisive in securing the economic future of the province . The potential of KwaZulu-Natal’s Northern Growth Corridor to provide almost unlimited development and business opportunities could be boosted through a unique Public Private Partnership (PPP) model that could see substantial funding flowing from the private sector into education funding to help address the social infrastructure backlog in this area.

To read the full report, click here.

Special Economic Zones  

Special Economic Zones

Improving on the limited success of the IDZ concept

The proposed SEZ programme is earmarked to conquer the shortfalls of its predecessor and with this, we ask, how will the programme fulfill its mandate? What has been the process in legislating the Bill thus far and what does the proposed Bill have in store for the growth areas of Northern KwaZulu-Natal?

Although South Africa’s four Industrial Development Zones (IDZ’s) have injected R14.9 billion into the local economy and created around 48 000 jobs, their achievements have not been in line with initial targets, a result that must be taken into account when the Department of Trade and Industry’s (DTI’s) draft plans for the creation of Special Economic Zones (SEZs) are considered; especially in relation to the rapidly growing Northern Growth Corridor in Kwazulu-Natal (KZN).

To read the full report, click here.


Key contact

André Pottas
Corporate Finance Leader, KwaZulu-Natal
Tel: + 27 31 560 7033
LinkedIn: My Profile


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