Health minister Dr Aaron Motsoaledi and KZN Health MEC Dr Sibongiseni Dhlomo have expressed their satisfaction with operations at a condom factory situated at Dube TradePort, near the King Shaka International Airport. News24 reports that this was after Motsoaledi and Dhlomo paid a visit to the factory, which is a joint venture between SA Health Protection Services and US-based company HBM.
The facility, trading as HBM-SA, produces 700 000 condoms per day for the local and export markets, and is expected to double its output soon, as it continues to build capacity. Among the HBM-SA production line is the government’s Max condoms, which replaced the Choice brand.
The report says the new R150m factory is regarded as a coup for KwaZulu-Natal as it will create up to 150 local jobs in its first development phase. Previously, the Health Department imported all its stock from a manufacturer in China.
Dhlomo said Motsoaledi was pleased with what he saw and was looking forward to coming back for the official launch of the facility, which was expected soon. “The minister was impressed to see that this factory has the capacity to produce 1,4m condoms per day. We are looking forward to coming back with the minister for the formal launch of this HBM-SA condom factory.”
Dhlomo said the logistical positioning of the factory adjacent to the airport also made future expansion into the SADC region more viable.
“Condoms are still regarded as one of the safest measures to prevent the spread of sexually-transmitted diseases and unwanted pregnancies,” he said. Dhlomo said government was continuing to promote dual protection as a strategy to curb unwanted pregnancies and sexually-transmitted infections such as HIV and others.
Dual protection entails men and boys undergoing medical male circumcision; using condoms during every episode of sexual contact; and all of this coupled with female contraceptive methods.News24 report