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Rail News

Sphere Holdings moves to raise R1bn in support of black-industrialist vision

By: Terence Creamer     7th July 2015 Black-owned investment holding company Sphere Holdings plans to raise a further R1-billion in the coming months in support of its strategy of becoming a leading black industrial enterprise, which could ultimately seek a listing on the JSE. CEO Itumeleng Kgaboesele, who cofounded the company in... 

New PRASA trains meet safety, technical requirements – Montana 

By: Natasha Odendaal     6th July 2015 The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) on Monday moved to assure South Africans that, despite contrary claims emerging in Sunday newspaper Rapport, its new – and growing – fleet of Afro locomotives were running on the nation’s expansive railway lines without fault. Showcasing videos... 

New PRASA trains meet safety, technical requirements – Montana
Photo by Duane Daws
PRASA CEO Lucky Montana

Gautrain to buy more rolling stock, reconsiders funding model

By: Irma Venter     6th July 2015 The Gautrain Management Agency (GMA) and the Gauteng provincial government “were close to announcing” a R3-billion investment, funded by the Development Bank of Southern Africa, to buy additional rolling stock, build a new depot, and install additional signalling, said GMA chief operating officer... 

 Gautrain to buy more rolling stock, reconsiders funding model

Road-to-rail freight shift needs economic, environmental drivers – WWF-SA 

By: Natalie Greve     6th July 2015 While acknowledging that its inherent proclivity for the shift of freight from road to rail is owing largely to environmental considerations, World Wide Fund for Nature South Africa (WWF-SA) believes this trend is only likely to strengthen if supported by a strong economic case, delegates at the... 

Road-to-rail freight shift needs economic, environmental drivers – WWF-SA

Caustic political reaction to R600m train tender

By: News24Wire      6th July 2015 The DA and the EFF had caustic reactions to reports that the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) imported brand new locomotives worth R600-million despite explicit warnings that the trains are not suited for local rail lines. Senior railways engineers and sources with first-hand... 

Caustic political reaction to R600m train tender

Gibela says building of R1bn commuter train factory to begin in Q3

By: Terence Creamer     1st July 2015 The Gibela Rail Transport Consortium (Gibela) reported on Wednesday that it would begin building a
R1-billion factory complex at Dunnottar, in the Gauteng metropolitan area of Ekurhuleni, during the third quarter of 2015. The 85 000 m2 factory was being established to manufacture trains for the... 

Gibela says building of R1bn commuter train factory to begin in Q3

Advisory network promotes shared infrastructure in Africa

By: Dylan Stewart     26th June 2015 To fast-track high-level private sector investment in Africa’s regional infrastructure, top global and African CEOs launched the Continental Business Network (CBN) – an exclusive infrastructure investment advisory platform for African heads of State – earlier this month, reports risk, social and... 

Africa’s rail industry assembles in Joburg

By: Dylan Stewart     26th June 2015 Remodelling public–private partnerships (PPPs), financing rail infrastructure and light rail as an alternative for passengers and intermodal networks for supply chain efficiency are a few of the topics that will be covered at the eighteenth yearly Africa Rail 2015 event, which will be held at... 

Clear strategy needed for rail upgrade plans

By: Dylan Stewart     26th June 2015 South Africa’s numerous rail upgrade plans are not guided by a coherent, high-level, overarching strategy, the lack of which may lead to poor implementation, advises engineering and professional services consulting firm WSP Group Africa regional director Vishaal Lutchman. 

Clear strategy needed for  rail upgrade plans
VISHAAL LUTCHMAN A clear vision will unify the motivations of different sectors

Italian electronics group says localisation of components makes business sense

By: Schalk Burger     26th June 2015 Italian electronic components subsidiary Microelettrica Scientifica South Africa is producing components and electrical equipment with local content of between 50% and 90% based on non-negotiable economic drivers. This approach has benefited the parent company Microelettrica Scientifica while... 

Italian electronics group says localisation of components  makes business sense
Photo by Schalk Burger
CIRCUIT BREAKER TEAM Malebo Kgamedi and her circuit breaker assembly team

Local company hopes to be awarded Transnet tender  

By: Dylan Stewart     26th June 2015 Local partner and agent for Plasser & Theurer Track, maintenance equipment manufacturer Plasser South Africa (SA), has submitted a tender to provide State-owned rail utility Transnet with three flash butt rail-welding machines, Plasser SA spokesperson Tamsin Louw tells Engineering News. 

Local company hopes to be awarded Transnet tender
SPECIAL ABILITY The flash butt rail welder can perform a closure weld

Local engineering firm more than doubles y/y rail revenue

By: Dylan Stewart     26th June 2015 Niche technology engineering firm Ansys reported in May that it had increased its rail revenue from R37-million in 2014 to R94-million in 2015.  

Local engineering firm more than doubles  y/y rail revenue
Photo by Duane Daws
TEDDY DAKA Ansys has diversified its product offering into areas such as telecommunications and mining

Passenger fleet revamp a reason to celebrate, says consultancy

By: Dylan Stewart     26th June 2015 State-owned rail operator the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa’s (PRASA’s) rolling stock fleet renewal programme will provide a vital boost for South Africa’s economy and help establish a meaningful passenger railway industry in the country, says consultancy and auditing firm KPMG... 

Passenger fleet revamp a reason to celebrate, says consultancy
DE BUYS SCOTT Less than half of the existing fleet is operable

Rail development must encompass entire continent – JCCI

By: Dylan Stewart     26th June 2015 If South Africa enhances its railway capacity and is the only country to do so in the Southern Africa region, without attending to north–south, inter-State rail corridors, the benefits of the country’s planned rail upgrades will be a lot less significant, says Johannesburg Chamber of Commerce and... 

Rail development must encompass entire continent – JCCI
FAY MUKADDAM New rolling stock is a priority when upgrading rail facilities

Road-to-rail policy crucial for rural areas

By: Dylan Stewart     26th June 2015 While the South African government has finally indicated its support for a road-to-rail policy, which involves significant upgrades of South Africa’s rail facilities to encourage their being used more for goods and passenger transport than automotive transport, finding a positive practical and... 

Rolling stock life expectancy improved

By: Dylan Stewart     26th June 2015 With billions of rands being invested in South Africa’s rail infrastructure over the next three years, the country must consider ways of ensuring the reliability, efficiency and longevity of these assets as part of this development, suggests petrochemicals major Shell South Africa technical... 

SA’s rail revitalisation ambitions lauded as more opportunities arise 

By: Natasha Odendaal     23rd June 2015 US Secretary for Transportation Anthony Foxx has lauded South Africa’s rail revitalisation efforts as State-owned Transnet and US-based General Electric (GE) developed one of the “best localisation case studies”. Speaking at a US State delegation tour of Transnet’s Koedoespoort locomotive... 

SA’s rail revitalisation ambitions lauded as more opportunities arise
SA’s rail revitalisation ambitions lauded as more opportunities arise. Video & Editing: Darlene Creamer. Recorded 23.6.2015

Transnet secures R2.8bn loan from KfW

By: Creamer Media Reporter      23rd June 2015 Freight logistics group Transnet has secured a R2.8-billion loan from Germany’s KfW Development Bank to fund part of its 1064 locomotives acquisition programme. Transnet would use the proceeds to fund the acquisition of 240 electric locomotives to be built in cooperation with Bombardier... 

Transnet secures R2.8bn loan from KfW
Photo by Duane Daws
Transnet acting CEO Siyabonga Gama

PRASA looking at public value academic programme

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     17th June 2015 The Passenger Rail Services of South Africa (PRASA) is looking to fund a tertiary academic programme that would focus on theorising the concept of public value. While still in its planning phase, PRASA Group chief strategy officer Sipho Sithole said the entity aimed to launch this programme in... 

PRASA looking at public value academic programme

GE’s Immelt outlines his three priorities for improving South Africa’s economic prospects 

By: Terence Creamer     4th June 2015 General Electric (GE) chairperson and CEO Jeffrey Immelt has offered some insight, in an essay written for a McKinsey & Company publication titled ‘Reimagining South Africa’, on how he might personally go about tackling some of South Africa’s major socioeconomic problems, from growth and... 

GE’s Immelt outlines his three priorities for improving South Africa’s economic prospects
Photo by Duane Daws
General Electric chairperson and CEO Jeffrey Immelt

Transnet signs R30bn loan with Chinese bank 

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     4th June 2015 State-owned Transnet on Thursday signed a R30-billion loan facility agreement with China Development Bank (CDB) for the funding of hundreds of locomotives to be manufactured by China South Rail (CSR) and China North Rail (CNR) as part of Transnet Freight Rail’s (TFR’s) 1 064 locomotives... 

Transnet signs R30bn loan with Chinese bank

Transnet, labour unions sign three-year wage deal

By: Creamer Media Reporter      3rd June 2015 Freight logistics group Transnet on Tuesday night signed a three-year wage agreement with the South African Transport and Allied Workers’ Union (Satawu) and the United National Transport Union (UNTU). The agreement will see bargaining unit employees receive increases of 7%, 7.5% and 8.25% in the... 

Transnet, labour unions sign three-year wage deal

Dozens trapped as trains collide 

By: RDM News Wire      20th May 2015 A Shosholoza Meyl passenger train has collided head-on with a goods train near Hanover outside King William’s Town. Emergency services personnel are currently at the scene‚ trying to free 25 people who are trapped. 

Dozens trapped as trains collide

Gautrain implements annual fare uptick from June 1

By: Creamer Media Reporter      14th May 2015 Gautrain’s fares are expected to rise by between 4% and 6% effective June 1, Gauteng MEC for Roads and Transport Dr Ismail Vadi announced on Thursday. The multitiered fare structure introduced last year on the general passenger services remained unchanged, while users travelling within an... 

Gautrain implements annual fare uptick from June 1

WiFi, energy, transport take centre stage in Tshwane mayor’s 2015 SoCA

By: Natalie Greve     14th May 2015 Presenting a “balance sheet” of the capital city’s shortcomings and achievements, Tshwane executive mayor Kgosientso Ramokgopa on Thursday delivered his State of the Capital Address (SoCA) at the city’s iconic Freedom Park, underlining achievements made in the roll-out of free WiFi, business... 

WiFi, energy, transport take centre stage in Tshwane mayor’s 2015 SoCA
Photo by Government ZA
Tshwane executive mayor Kgosientso Ramokgopa

DTI to focus on compliance as yet more products designated for localisation

By: Terence Creamer     11th May 2015 The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has announced a further set of product designations for local procurement by the public sector and has indicated that efforts will be stepped up during 2015 to improve compliance across all government departments and State-owned companies (SoCs). Through... 

DTI to focus on compliance as yet more products designated for localisation

Transnet, DBSA partner to accelerate private sector partnerships

By: Natasha Odendaal     11th May 2015 State-owned Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) has agreed to part with skills and funding to accelerate parastatal Transnet’s multibillion-rand private sector participation (PSP) infrastructure investment programme. The development bank would provide funding and expertise for the PSP... 

Transnet, DBSA partner to accelerate private sector partnerships

Coal line set for 10-day maintenance shutdown

By: Terence Creamer     11th May 2015 State-owned utility Transnet Freight Rail (TFR) has confirmed that it will embark on a ten-day shutdown of the coal export line from May 12 to 21 and that no coal or general-freight trains will be operational on the corridor for the duration of the shutdown. The annual shutdown is designed to... 

Coal line set for 10-day maintenance shutdown

Southern African railways conference heads for Gauteng

By: Creamer Media Reporter      11th May 2015 The Southern African Railways Association, an association of railways utilities in the Southern African Development Community (SADC), will hold its fifth conference and exhibition at Emperors Palace, in Gauteng, from May 26 to 28. The gathering will be held under the theme ‘The role of rail... 

Southern African railways conference heads for Gauteng

More funding needed for transport – Peters

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     5th May 2015 Transport Minister Dipuo Peters on Tuesday said her department had a budget of R53.7-billion for 2015/16 to meet the transport needs of the country. Speaking at a media briefing prior to her budget vote, she added that the department’s budget would increase to R59.3-billion in 2017/18. 

More funding needed for transport – Peters

‘Significant’ tech gap evident in SA rail industry, says Gibela 

By: Irma Venter     4th May 2015 The technology gap between South Africa’s rail industry and the global industry is “very significant”, with “very few” existing black companies active in the local rail environment, says Gibela CEO Marc Granger. Gibela has been appointed to deliver 600 new X'Ttrapolis Mega commuter trains to... 

‘Significant’ tech gap evident in SA rail industry, says Gibela
Photo by Duane Daws
Marc Granger

Train driver passed danger signal before Joburg crash

By: News24Wire      29th April 2015 The driver of a train that crashed into a stationary train in Denver, Johannesburg, leaving one person dead, passed a red warning signal, PRASA rail CEO Mosenngwa Mofi said on Wednesday. "The signalling system is an automatic system.  When a train occupies the track, the signals will protect it... 

Train driver passed danger signal before Joburg crash

Inquiry set up to investigate Denver crash

By: SANews, SA government news service     29th April 2015 A Board of Inquiry has been set up to investigate the root course of yesterday’s train accident at the Denver train station, near Johannesburg. Preliminary investigations show that the Tshwane Business Express (TBE) 1602 collided into the rear of the stationery Metroplus 0600 at the Denver Station. 

Inquiry set up to investigate Denver crash

Joburg train crash: Transport minister wants answers

By: News24Wire      28th April 2015 Transport Minister Dipuo Peters on Tuesday called for answers into the cause of the train crash in Johannesburg that killed a woman Metrorail employee. "As government... we need PRASA to give answers as to how a moving train can crash into a stationary one," she told reporters at the Denver train... 

Joburg train crash: Transport minister wants answers

Weak commodity outlook puts revenue diversification at top of Gama’s Transnet agenda

By: Terence Creamer     24th April 2015 Acting Transnet CEO Siyabonga Gama, who was appointed to the position following the surprise secondment of Brian Molefe to Eskom, has placed revenue diversification at the top of his list of immediate priorities, with the weak commodity outlook seen as having the potential to undermine the... 

 Weak commodity outlook puts revenue diversification at top of Gama’s Transnet agenda
Photo by Duane Daws
Acting Transnet CEO Siyabonga Gama

Electricity, oil and gas businesses drive 36% y/y increase in CIG’s profit

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     21st April 2015 JSE-listed Consolidated Infrastructure Group (CIG) on Tuesday reported a 26% year-on-year increase in revenue to R1.7-billion for the six months ended February 28, while its aftertax profit grew by 36% year-on-year to R164-million. The higher profit was driven largely by a 90% increase in profit... 

Electricity, oil and gas businesses drive 36% y/y increase in CIG’s profit

Transnet appoints Gama acting CE

     20th April 2015 State-owned Transnet has appointed Siyabonga Gama as acting CE, effective immediately. This followed Brian Molefe’s secondment as acting CE of power utility Eskom. 

Transnet appoints Gama acting CE
Photo by Duane Daws
Transnet acting CE Siyabonga Gama

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