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South Africa: Automotive Industry Moves Into PPE Space

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The South African automotive sector has stepped up to produce personal protective equipment (PPE), which is high in demand as the country deals with the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The National Association of Automotive Component and Allied Manufacturers (NAACAM) identified an area of opportunity for a number of their manufacturers to produce one of the items that the COVID-19 pandemic demands in order to keep us safe and protected from the virus, namely face shields and visors,” Proudly South African said on Thursday.

Together with Business for South Africa, NAACAM did their research and will use existing capacity, machinery, raw materials and the sector’s engineering skills to mass produce face shields, which could compete in terms of price and quality with imported versions.

The sector is manufacturing face shields that strictly adhere to the recommended guidelines drafted by the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition, Department of Health and the South African Bureau of Standards.

“Of the 14 companies that were initially identified as being able to respond immediately to the production switch, many are 51% or more black-owned, putting the economic benefits of this new production line back into communities,” Proudly South African said noting that the demand for visors is expected to rise significantly, as face shields are seen as a secondary barrier to infection in the health sector and in non-health care spaces.

The manufactures of the PPE will be listed on the Proudly South African portal.