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Rail News

Gibela’s supplier workshop goes off without a hitch 

By: Creamer Media Reporter      28th July 2015 Ahead of the start of construction of the Gibela Rail Transport Consortium’s R1-billion modern manufacturing facility and ancillary supplier business park, in Dunnottar, on the East Rand, the company gathered in excess of 450 aspiring contractors at a sector-specific workshop on Tuesday. The... 

Gautrain fare payment to incorporate bankcards by 2017

By: Irma Venter     28th July 2015 Enhancements to the Gautrain service will see users gain access to the rapid-rail link by tapping their local or international bank-issued contactless credit and debit cards at the fare gates – instead of their Gautrain gold cards – provided they are compliant with the Europay/MasterCard and Visa... 

Gautrain fare payment to incorporate bankcards by 2017

Transport union demands reinstatement of fired PRASA CEO Montana 

By: African News Agency      28th July 2015 South African President Jacob Zuma should fire Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) board chairman Popo Molefe and reinstate fired CEO Lucky Montana to restore order at the rail organisation, the South African Transport and Allied Workers Union said on Tuesday. The union’s deputy general... 

Transport union demands reinstatement of fired PRASA CEO Montana
Photo by Duane Daws
Former PRASA CEO Lucky Montana

Suspended PRASA engineer resigns, faces criminal charge over alleged fraud 

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     27th July 2015 The State-owned Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) on Monday confirmed it had received an official resignation letter from its rail division’s former head of engineering services Daniel Mtimkulu. This followed after Mtimkulu was charged with gross dishonesty and fraudulent... 

Suspended PRASA engineer resigns, faces criminal charge over alleged fraud

Creamer Media publishes Real Economy Insight: Road And Rail 2015 brief

     27th July 2015 Creamer Media’s Real Economy Year Book has been divided into individual reports under the banner Real Economy Insight and investigates key developments in the automotive, construction, electricity, road and rail, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum sectors. 

Creamer Media publishes Real Economy Insight: Road And Rail 2015 brief

Gautrain makes positive economic contribution to province, report shows

By: Irma Venter     24th July 2015 The R27-billion Gautrain project has contributed around R20-billion to the provincial gross domestic product (GDP) over the six years it took to build the rapid-rail link, notes a KPMG Gautrain economic impact report. Construction also sustained 121 800 jobs, and increased government revenue by... 

Madonsela delays release of PRASA report

By: News24Wire      23rd July 2015 The release of the public protector's report into maladministration at the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA), which was expected to happen on Thursday, has been postponed, the office of the public protector said on Wednesday evening. "The decision to postpone comes after some of the... 

Madonsela delays release of PRASA report
Photo by Duane Daws
Public Protector Thuli Madonsela

First three train sets pass through fitting line – Gibela 

By: David Oliveira     21st July 2015 The first three train sets, each comprising six coaches, of South Africa-based black-empowered train manufacturer Gibela’s R51-billion new build project for State-owned the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa, have passed through the fitting line at French rail solutions original-equipment... 

First three train sets pass through fitting line – Gibela
Three train sets have passed through the fitting line at Alstom’s manufacturing plant in Brazil

PRASA faces a gruelling week 

By: News24Wire      21st July 2015 It will be a week of high drama at the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA), in which the future of senior executives and politicians could be in the balance. While the below four reasons are worrying signs for the agency, there should be no disruption to any routes and business will... 

PRASA faces a gruelling week

Afro 4000 locomotive test report available in August – regulator 

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     20th July 2015 The Railway Safety Regulator (RSR) expects to have a report on the results of the testing of Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa's (PRASA’s) Afro 4000 locomotives available at the end of August. State-owned PRASA was currently facing a media storm, amid allegations that the Afro 4000... 

Afro 4000 locomotive test report available in August – regulator

Tender soon for 12 more Gautrain train sets while expansion study advances 

By: Terence Creamer     17th July 2015 A request for proposals (RFP) will be released in September for the procurement of 12 additional train sets for the Gautrain rapid-rail operation, which is currently facing peak-period capacity constraints. The aim is to have the first new trains – which would be compatible with the network, but... 

Tender soon for 12 more Gautrain train sets while expansion study advances

Montana says govt to review PRASA’s decision to cut his contract short

By: Natasha Odendaal     17th July 2015 Shortly after the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa’s (PRASA’s) eleventh-hour cancellation of its anticipated press conference surrounding the exit of Lucky Montana, the ousted CEO on Friday said the cutting short of his notice period was “disappointing but not unexpected”. However, speaking... 

Montana says govt to review PRASA’s decision to cut his contract short
Photo by Duane Daws
Former PRASA CEO Lucky Montana

PRASA derails press briefing

By: News24Wire      17th July 2015 Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) called a press briefing to explain CEO Lucky Montana’s departure, but then cancelled it on Friday morning. “After consultations between the Minister [of Transport Dipuo Peters] and the board, there has been a mutual agreement that there will be no... 

PRASA derails press briefing
Photo by Duane Daws
Former PRASA CEO Lucky Montana

Border Management Agency Bill aims to ease congestion, Peters says

By: Irma Venter     17th July 2015 Cabinet in June approved the establishment of a Border Management Agency, to be tasked with integrating the functions of all government departments and agencies that operate at South African ports of entry, said Transport Minister Dipuo Peters last week. Speaking at the Southern African Transport... 

Gautrain investment on cards to increase peak-time capacity

By: Irma Venter     17th 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... 

PRASA, Montana part ways early 

By: Natasha Odendaal     16th July 2015 The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) has appointed COO Nathi Khena as acting CEO following Lucky Montana’s departure earlier this week. The State-owned passenger rail firm, which continued to seek out a suitable successor after it was announced in April that Montana would step down... 

PRASA, Montana part ways early
Photo by Duane Daws
Lucky Montana

Coal terminal in R1.34bn equipment replacement drive

By: Martin Creamer     16th July 2015 The private-sector-owned Richards Bay Coal Terminal (RBCT) on Thursday announced a R1.34-billion equipment replacement project to boost South Africa’s coal supply chain and replace aging equipment with minimal impact on the business of the coal terminal. To be replaced after 39 years of service... 

Coal terminal in R1.34bn equipment replacement drive
Nosipho Siwisa-Damasane

Transnet says take-or-pay contracts offer volume ‘cover’ in weak commodity climate 

By: Terence Creamer     14th July 2015 State-owned freight logistics group Transnet is budgeting for continued growth in coal and iron-ore export volumes in 2015/16, despite weak commodity market conditions. The group railed 76.3-million tons of export coal last year, a material 12% increase on the 68.2-million tons achieved in... 

Transnet says take-or-pay contracts offer volume ‘cover’ in weak commodity climate
Acting Transnet CEO Siyabonga Gama on the performance and outlook for its commodity-rail business units. Camera Work & Editing: Nicholas Boyd. 14.7.2015

Afro 4000 train locomotives perfect – Prasa 

By: African News Agency      13th July 2015 The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) insists media reports on its Spanish-manufactured Afro 4000 diesel locomotives were incorrect and misleading. On Monday, Prasa Rail chief executive Mosenngwa Mofi told reporters in Pretoria that the gap between the minimum contact wire and the... 

Afro 4000 train locomotives perfect – Prasa

PRASA, Transnet had concerns over locomotive height – documents 

By: News24Wire      13th July 2015 PRASA’s own engineers warned in a report that its new Afro 4000 diesel locomotives, which were bought from Spain at a cost of R600-million, could come so close to overhead power lines in certain parts of the country’s poorly maintained railway lines that they could pose a significant safety... 

PRASA, Transnet had concerns over locomotive height – documents

Gautrain boosts GDP, property development, says KPMG report

By: Irma Venter     9th July 2015 The R27-billion Gautrain project had contributed around R20-billion to the provincial gross domestic product (GDP) over the six years it took to build the rapid-rail link, noted a KPMG Gautrain economic impact report, released in Johannesburg on Thursday. Construction also sustained 121 800 jobs,... 

Gautrain boosts GDP, property development, says KPMG report

Natcor rail line to undergo yearly maintenance shutdown

By: Creamer Media Reporter      9th July 2015 Transnet Freight Rail will undertake the yearly maintenance shutdown of its Natal Corridor (Natcor) rail line, from Rietvlei, in Gauteng, to the Durban harbour, from July 14 to 23. The planned shutdown enabled major maintenance of the rail infrastructure to be carried out. 

Natcor rail line to undergo yearly maintenance shutdown

Aberdare opens manufacturing line to supply rail industry

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     8th July 2015 Power cable manufacturer Aberdare Cables has launched a new production line within its existing plant in Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal, designed to manufacture locomotive cables for State-owned enterprises Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) and Transnet. The company invested... 

Aberdare opens manufacturing line to supply rail industry

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... 

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

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

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