In what passes for modern manufacturing in SA, hopes don't soar higher or fall faster than in the tale I'm about to tell you. The story ends with a full stop etched with the face of minerals & energy minister Gwede Mantashe.

ARTsolar's factory is the last photovoltaic-panel manufacturing plant left in SA. It is in New Germany, an industrial area close to Durban. It is an immaculate facility filled with the most modern equipment, imported mainly from Switzerland. It was built to make solar panels for renewable energy projects initiated during the regime of former president Jacob Zuma...

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