Chamber Interventions

The Nelson Mandela Bay Business Chamber is committed to providing leadership in areas where its intervention could benefit its member companies and surrounds.


  • The Chamber has launched an initiative called "Adopt a School" to help address the water crisis in our city. Member companies are repairing faulty or damaged plumbing systems at schools that consume high amounts of water. Currently, 35% of the city's water is lost due to leaks, with 10% of this happening at schools. So far, member companies have adopted 76 schools and a clinic, and have completed work at 53 of these schools. Additionally, 30 schools and clinics have received assistance in the form of water tanks to collect rainwater, and six boreholes have been installed at six schools for the benefit of the surrounding communities.
  • In total just under 1.7 million litres of water per day was saved through the targeted Adopt-A-Leak intervention in the 7 zones, with an average reduction of 23% in each zone.
  • Through our partnership with the Gift of the Givers, 45 boreholes were sunk to ensure that communities have access to water.
  • The Council has approved our application for the Broad Framework MOU that allows member companies to adopt a variety of municipal infrastructure that needs fixing.
  • Five companies have already adopted 17 billboards across Nelson Mandela Bay following the Chamber’s recent call to businesses to assist the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality with refurbishing 51 billboards across the Metro.
  • A total of 17 traffic lights have been adopted and fitted with inverters to prevent them from going off during loadshedding.
  • We signed an agreement with the Municipality allowing businesses to secure sub-station infrastructure in their area of operations, ensuring uninterrupted power supply for 20 sub-stations adopted by 12 companies. In 2023, our Helpdesk assisted businesses in overcoming 82 bureaucratic obstacles.
  • We are working with some key clusters namely the Deal Party Cluster, Perseverance Cluster, Struandale Cluster, North End Cluster, Kariega Cluster, Beachfront Cluster, Neave/Korsten Cluster and Baakens Valley Cluster with a strong focus on prioritising the resolution of critical enabling environment issues. 


  • We have implemented a strategic plan where we have adopted a more activist, collaborative and action-orientated approach in pursuing our vision of being the leading catalyst for Nelson Mandela Bay to retain and attract business.
  • We have realigned our Task Teams to prioritize the most pressing issues of water and electricity, roads and transport, safety and security, and property.
  • We reimagined our approach to Trade and Investment and launched an Investors Forum focused on the issues, which affect the retention of investment in the Metro.
  • The Chamber issued 6255 COO certificates between January and June 2023, compared to 5741 issued during the same period last year, with the biggest drivers being the Wool and Mohair, the Perishables and Fruit sectors, including general manufacturers.
  • We have successfully challenged the municipal tariff methodology proposed by Nersa. This methodology would have been used to determine and approve electricity tariffs for the next two years. The High Court has ruled in our favour, which is a positive development as it will change the way electricity tariffs are set. In the future, municipalities will not be able to pass on costs to consumers due to their own inefficiencies. This outcome will benefit all South African businesses and consumers.
  • We have formed part of the revitalisation of the Nelson Mandela Bay Civil Society Coalition to take action, as political instability has rendered the Metro incapable of delivering basic services to communities and businesses.
  • We have established a Business Intelligence Hub with a key focus on providing targeted research focused on collecting economic data to empower Chamber members.


  • The Chamber’s Enterprise Development Programme, driven through a partnership with the ECDC, has benefited 218 businesses since its inception in 2014. The figure includes 27 graduates who graduated from the programme in 2022. The programme has been earmarked to support a further 162 MSMEs between 2023 to 2026, with a mandate of developing a cohort of sustainable and scaling enterprises.
  • We established the landmark Entrepreneurship Desk that acts as a single contact where business growth and sustainability interventions are housed. These are offered pro bono to MSMEs registered with the Desk to ensure accessibility. The Desk’s offerings currently support over 237 MSMEs who employ over 1,000 employees.
  • The Chamber with its strategic partner the ECDC, recognizes the importance of capacitating local Eastern Cape-based MSMEs with export-ready products and services, to take their rightful place in the international arena. As such, the Chamber and ECDC established the Exporters Development Programme with a mandate of providing export readiness training, exporter mentorship, and facilitating export market opportunities. To date, the programme has benefitted 49 exporters with a further 20 to be trained and supported during the 2023/24 period.


  • We recently established the Renewable Energy Cluster which has ignited significant interest from some of the Metro’s largest energy users who have now joined forces to explore alternative energy solutions to help sustain their operations. This cluster represents 25% of the Metro’s current electricity usage and could potentially reduce the stages of loadshedding for the entire Metro. Currently, we have 34 member companies who are interested in taking up renewable energy.
  • We established a Property Task Team with a key focus on facilitating more efficient land planning and development processes between major stakeholders in the property sector and the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality.


  • Events were back in full swing with 42 last year (2022).
  • We launched the Empowerment Network which consists of three distinct sub-networks namely the Connect Network, the Mentorship Network, and the Women Empowerment Network. These are platforms where women, professionals and businesses are able to meet, connect, and network among themselves. The platforms further hosts various sector and opportunity orientated events and workshops


  • We have facilitated the successful implementation of a more tenable and planned 24-hour voluntary stage 5+ loadshedding schedule for qualifying industry members. To date, 40 companies have participated in the programme, and 9 of these are from NMB Logistics Park.
  • The Chamber also collaborated with other key stakeholders like the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality, E’Zethu Development Trust and other civil society organisations to facilitate much-needed interventions and discussions affecting the local economy. These led to valuable projects implemented by the Chamber such as the development of a comprehensive restoration plan of the Baakens Valley corridor to harness it for economic benefits.
  • We successfully launched a Nelson Mandela Bay Climate Change Coalition to tackle climate change challenges in the Metro.
  • Through our partnership with GIZ NatuRes, the GIZ/NMBBC Covid-19 Response we received R1.5 million to support our Covid-19 response effort. The fund enabled us to drive an awareness campaign across different communities in the Metro and to hand out protective facemasks and sanitisers to less fortunate communities. This initiative demonstrated the extent of impact which can be achieved through stakeholders working together to support a common cause.
  • The Nelson Mandela Bay Business Chamber has completed its QINA campaign, funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)'s COVID-19 fund. The campaign aimed to raise awareness and educate the public on COVID-19 best practices and vaccination in the Metro. The Chamber and GIZ's Natural Resources Stewardship Programme (NatuReS) designed a special project to address the virus' spread and adverse effects on the Bay's economic and social development.
  • The Presidential Climate Change has appointed a team to undertake a viability study for a potential Climate change SEZ for NMB.