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Rail News

Montana describes Sars order to attach his assets as 'vindictive'

By: News24Wire      21st November 2019 Former Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) chief executive Lucky Montana has described the latest move by the South African Revenue Service (Sars), who seized his assets, as "vindictive" and "unethical". Montana said the Sheriff of the Court arrived at his home on Wednesday morning with... 

Transnet signs R1.6bn loan agreement with German bank

By: Marleny Arnoldi     14th November 2019 Transnet has signed a R1.6-billion seven-year bilateral loan agreement with international investor KfW Ipex-Bank. The State-owned freight utility on Thursday said the agreement demonstrated continued investor confidence in the business and the investor’s comfort in Transnet’s improved... 

Transnet signs R1.6bn loan agreement with German bank
KfW-Ipex Bank's Torsten Osterloh with Transnet acting CE Mohammed Mahomedy

Transnet confirms legal review of 10-64 locomotive contracts   

By: Terence Creamer     11th November 2019 State-owned logistics group Transnet confirmed on Monday that it is initiating a legal review of the a R49-billion locomotive procurement contract, known as 10-64, having already declared the contracts irregular and unlawful. Speaking at the release of the group’s interim results, acting CEO... 

Transnet confirms legal review of 10-64 locomotive contracts
Transnet acting CEO Mohammed Mahomedy on the initiation of a legal review of the 10-64 contracts. Camera Work: Kutlwano Matlala. Editing Nicholas Boyd. 11.11.2019

Gautrain resumes full train service after power outage left morning commuters stranded

By: African News Agency      8th November 2019 Commuter service Gautrain resumed full services on Friday after hundreds of passengers were earlier left stranded when a power outage forced trains to stop running halfway between Johannesburg and Pretoria and on the route between the Sandton district and OR Tambo International Airport. "We are... 

Gautrain resumes full train service after power outage left morning commuters stranded

Ubunye inaugurates modern rail components factory 

7th November 2019 Rail components manufacturer Alstom Ubunye last month inaugurated its 80 000 m2 modernised factory, in Nigel, Gauteng. Marleny Arnoldi tells us more about the site. 

Ubunye inaugurates modern rail components factory
Ubunye inaugurates modern rail components factory

Uganda revamps century-old rail network after China delays funding

By: Reuters     6th November 2019 Uganda will begin refurbishing its century-old rail network this month to boost bulk cargo transportation, after failing to secure $2.2-billion in Chinese funding for a new standard gauge line, a senior rail official said on Wednesday. The rehabilitation will be carried out in phases over several... 

Transport union disputes PRASA's war room 'success' after Mbalula announcement

By: News24Wire      5th November 2019 Members of the United National Transport Union (UNTU) have disputed the statistics and successes announced by Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula regarding the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa's (PRASA) war room on Monday. The war room was launched on August 8 2019, to improve the customer... 

Mbalula on mission to modernise PRASA amid commuter dissatisfaction

By: News24Wire      4th November 2019 Amid high levels of train commuter dissatisfaction, Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula says his intervention mechanism, the war room, has made good progress to turn this around. The war room was established to monitor progress and implement solutions on Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa's... 

Gautrain’s contactless-cards move seen as integrated ticketing precursor

By: Irma Venter     1st November 2019 As from October 31, public transport in South Africa has moved one step closer to integrated ticketing with the Gautrain to accept contactless bank cards for payment of its train, parking and bus services, says Bombela Concession Company marketing and communication executive Kesagee Nayager.... 

Transnet launches world’s longest production train  

By: Simone Liedtke     24th October 2019 State-owned rail company Transnet Freight Rail (TFR) on Thursday launched a 4-km-long train, with 375 wagons, officially making it the longest train in the world. The train was driven by Lisa Clark and transported about 24 000 t of manganese over a distance of more than 860 km between the Sishen... 

Transnet launches world’s longest production train
Transnet has launched a 4-km-long production train to transport manganese from the Northern Cape to Saldanha Bay. Camerawork: Dylan Slater; Editing: Nicholas Boyd.

TFR's agriculture, bulk liquids unit shut for planned maintenance

By: Creamer Media Reporter      23rd October 2019 State-owned Transnet Freight Rail (TFR) on Tuesday started the planned maintenance shutdown of its agriculture and bulk liquids (ABL) business unit. The shutdown will be concluded on October 28 and will affect the rail network from East London to Cathcart, Burgersdorp to Noupoort and... 

Traxtion supports opening up South Africa’s rail network to private operators

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     21st October 2019 Opening South Africa’s core railway network to private operators will stimulate economic growth in the country, Traxtion CEO James Holley tells Engineering News Online. He says the company fully supports government’s proposal, as outlined in a National Treasury economic growth discussion document... 

Transnet’s $400m Zim railway investment deal cancelled 

By: News24Wire      17th October 2019 Zimbabwe has cancelled a US$400-million investment deal for the National Railways of Zimbabwe, which had been awarded to a consortium that included South Africa's Transnet and the Diaspora Infrastructure Development Group. In 2017, the government of Zimbabwe awarded the $400-million tender for... 

 Transnet’s $400m Zim railway investment deal cancelled

Alstom Ubunye inaugurates modernised factory  

By: Marleny Arnoldi     17th October 2019 Rail components manufacturer Alstom Ubunye on Thursday inaugurated its 80 000 m2 modernised rail components factory, in Nigel, Gauteng. The factory was established in 1957 and Alstom acquired a 51% stake in the company, Commuter Transport and Locomotive Engineering, in 2016 calling the new... 

Alstom Ubunye inaugurates modernised factory
Photo by Creamer Media's Dylan Slater
A grinding artisan at Alstom Ubunye's factory, in Nigel

Gautrain to accept contactless bank cards from October 31

By: Irma Venter     17th October 2019 As from October 31, public transport in South Africa moves one step closer to integrated ticketing with the Gautrain to accept contactless bank cards for payment of its train, parking and bus services, says Bombela Concession Company marketing and communication executive Kesagee Nayager. This... 

 Gautrain to accept contactless bank cards from October 31

Zimbabwe cancels deal with Transnet JV to recapitalise state rail firm

By: Reuters     17th October 2019 Zimbabwe has cancelled a deal struck with South African logistics group Transnet and its partner to recapitalise State-owned National Railways of Zimbabwe (NRZ), citing a failure to meet timelines and funding issues, a government official said. The joint venture of Transnet and Diaspora... 

Zimbabwe cancels deal with Transnet JV to recapitalise state rail firm

Kenya opens Chinese-built railway linking Rift Valley town to Nairobi

By: Reuters     16th October 2019 Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta is due to open a new $1.5-billion Chinese rail line on Wednesday linking the capital Nairobi to the Rift Valley town of Naivasha, despite delays in establishing an industrial park there to drive freight traffic. The extension links to the $3.2-billion line between... 

Transnet coal train collision claims two lives

By: Marleny Arnoldi     16th October 2019 State-owned freight utility Transnet on Wednesday announced two fatalities and two severe injuries after a head-on collision between two trains at the Matlabas crossing, which is located between Thabazimbi and Lephalale, in Limpopo. The collision happened on Tuesday evening between a train with... 

Gauteng can build an economy around transport, says MEC Mamabola 

By: Irma Venter     10th October 2019 With Johannesburg no longer the city of gold, Gauteng has to develop a new economic plan for the future, says Gauteng Transport and Roads MEC Jacob Mamabola. “Smart mobility can be one of the biggest next economies of Gauteng. I think we can reposition transport . . . build an economy around... 

Gauteng can build an economy around transport, says MEC Mamabola

TMH Africa introduces South African facility

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     9th October 2019 Railway engineering company TMH Africa plans to use its new 45 000 m2 rolling stock manufacturing facility, in Boksburg, to serve the country and continent, TMH Africa CEO Jerome Boyet said during a media tour of the facility on Wednesday. The company unveiled the facility in April, after... 

TMH Africa introduces South African facility
Photo by Creamer Media's Dylan Slater
Completed components

Public transport requires greater integration

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     4th October 2019 Public transport in the country is not performing effectively, efficiently and to its full potential, owing to the various modes of public transport not being integrated. This was indicated by a representative from the Department of Transport during a Transport Forum discussion of bus-rapid... 

RSR 'reckless' for allowing PRASA trains on tracks – transport union

By: News24Wire      3rd October 2019 The United National Transport Union (UNTU) believes that the Railway Safety Regulator (RSR) is reckless for allowing Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) trains to stay on the tracks. The union's comments come after the release of the latest railway safety statistics by Transport... 

Railway Safety Regulator is 'reckless' for allowing Prasa trains on tracks – transport union 

By: News24Wire      3rd October 2019 The United National Transport Union believes that the Railway Safety Regulator is reckless for allowing Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa trains to stay on the tracks. The union's comments come after the release of the latest railway safety statistics by Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula on... 

Railway Safety Regulator is 'reckless' for allowing Prasa trains on tracks – transport union

South32's Fraser stresses importance of reliable, competitively priced electricity 

By: Simone Liedtke     2nd October 2019 An overarching challenge to businesses of all sizes in South Africa, is the lack of reliable and competitive power, says South32 COO Mike Fraser. The reliable and competitive supply of power, he adds, “is critical” to the country’s future industrial growth and the creation of jobs. 

South32's Fraser stresses importance of reliable, competitively priced electricity
Photo by Creamer Media's Dylan Slater
South32 COO Mike Fraser

Railway safety: Fatalities down, injuries to commuters up by 23%

By: News24Wire      1st October 2019 There's been a a decrease in railway fatalities, but an increase in the number of commuters injured due to "operational occurrences", according to the latest railway safety statistics revealed by Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula on Tuesday. The statistics are contained in the annual State of... 

PRASA appoints human capital exec, chief procurement officer

By: Creamer Media Reporter      1st October 2019 State-owned Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) has appointed Thandeka Ndilikazi group executive for human capital and Keabetswe Mpane group chief procurement officer, effective October 1. "The two executives are the best appointments for the agency as they possess critical skills that... 

Transnet sees slump in export coal volumes as ‘cyclical not structural’ 

By: Terence Creamer     30th September 2019 State-owned logistics group Transnet reported a 6.5% fall, from 77-million tons to 72-million tons, in export coal volumes in 2018/19, but described the decline as cyclical rather than structural. The group attributed the slump to “operational challenges, derailments, community unrest, train... 

Transnet sees slump in export coal volumes as ‘cyclical not structural’
Transnet acting CEO Mohammed Mahomedy on the 6.5% fall in export coal volumes in 2018/19, which he describes as cyclical rather than structural. Camerawork and editing: Darlene Creamer 30.9.2019

Transnet aims to secure settlements on ‘unlawful’ loco contracts by end of financial year  

By: Terence Creamer     30th September 2019 State-owned logistics company Transnet reported on Monday that settlement talks were under way with all four original-equipment manufacturers (OEMs) supplying it with 1 064 new diesel and electric locomotives under contracts that had since been deemed “irregular and unlawful” by the group. Under... 

Transnet aims to secure settlements on ‘unlawful’ loco contracts by end of financial year
Transnet acting CEO Mohammed Mahomedy on the group's settlement talks with four original-equipment manufacturers (OEMs) supplying it with 1 064 new diesel and electric locomotives under contracts that have been deemed “irregular and unlawful” by the group. Camerawork and editing: Darlene Creamer 30.9.2019

Transnet reports dramatic rise in irregular expenditure to R49bn  

By: Terence Creamer     30th September 2019 State-owned freight logistics utility Transnet received yet another qualified audit for its 2018/19 financial year and also announced a dramatic rise in irregular expenditure to R49-billion, after locomotive contracts valued at R41.5-billion where added to the figure, which stood at R8-billion at... 

Transnet reports dramatic rise in irregular expenditure to R49bn
Transnet acting CEO Mohammed Mahomedy outlines the reason for the group receiving yet another qualified audit during the 2018/19 financial year, as well as the dramatic rise in irregular expenditure to R49-billion. Camerawork and editing: Darlene Creamer 30.9.2019

Bellville, Strand train services cancelled for weekend maintenance work

By: News24Wire      27th September 2019 Metrorail has announced several train lines will be out of service on certain routes in the Western Cape between Friday and Sunday, requesting commuters to take different routes or use alternative transportation for the weekend. The central line between Bellville and Cape Town via Lavistown will... 

Doctored qualifications: 'Dr' Daniel Mthimkhulu ordered to pay PRASA R5.7m

By: News24Wire      23rd September 2019 Daniel Mthimkhulu, a former Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) executive who was fired for lying about his qualifications and who played a central role in the "too tall" trains tender scandal, has been ordered to pay PRASA back R5.7-million. The amount was paid to Mthimkhulu after he... 

City of Johannesburg won't turn on water at Sandton Gautrain station until owners pay R8m

By: News24Wire      23rd September 2019 The City of Johannesburg is not prepared to entertain the Sandton Gautrain station's landlord, Cedar Park Properties, even in a court of law, until it pays R8-million the City claims it owes, Mayor Herman Mashaba says. Mashaba told News24 on Monday: "Be guaranteed, for as long as we don't get our... 

TFR to start yearly iron-ore line shutdown on September 26 

By: Simone Liedtke     23rd September 2019 The yearly shutdown of State-owned Transnet Freight Rail’s iron-ore rail line is planned to start on September 26 and end on October 5. The maintenance window presents an opportunity for the entity to catch up on maintenance backlogs, such as replacing old and obsolete infrastructure, while... 

Alstom at the forefront of rail development in Southern Africa

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     18th September 2019 The development of rail transport and infrastructure in Southern Africa is expected to increase in the upcoming years owing to rapid urbanisation, population growth and increasing environmental concerns, and Alstom is well poised to contribute to this, says Alstom South Africa CEO Xavier... 

Alstom at the forefront of rail development in Southern Africa
Xavier Boisgontier

Rail Enforcement Unit to prioritise safety and security of Metrorail commuters for another year

By: African News Agency      18th September 2019 The deployment of the Rail Enforcement Unit (REU) that prioritises the safety and security of Metrorail commuters and infrastructure in Cape Town has been extended for another year. On Wednesday morning, Western Cape Transport and Public Works MEC, Bonginkosi Madikizela, Passenger Rail Service of... 

Transnet, Kalagadi cement partnership with R3bn Meca 2 contract 

By: Simone Liedtke     17th September 2019 Black-owned and woman-led Kalagadi Manganese and State-owned Transnet have cemented a partnership that will allow for the transportation of an initial one-million tonnes a year of beneficiated manganese in the form of sinter. The contract will earn Transnet in excess of R3-billion and volumes may... 

Transnet, Kalagadi cement partnership with R3bn Meca 2 contract
Kalagadi founder and chairperson Daphne Mashile-Nkosi and Transnet chief customer officer Mike Fanucchi

Govt looking to create 'certainty' in local steel, manufacturing industries 

By: Simone Liedtke     13th September 2019 Public Enterprises Deputy Minister Phumulo Masualle on Friday said the Department of Public Enterprises (DPE) was looking to create “a sense of certainty” in the local steel and manufacturing industries by leveraging investments from State-owned entities (SOEs). This, he told delegates at the... 

Govt looking to create 'certainty' in local steel, manufacturing industries
Public Enterprises Deputy Minister Phumulo Masualle discusses measures being implemented by government to create more certainty for the domestic steel and manufacturing sectors. Video: Kutlwano Matlala; Editing: Nicholas Boyd.
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