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South Africa State Transport Company Plans International Growth

Transnet SOC Ltd., the South African ports, rail and pipelines operator, is pursuing opportunities to expand on the continent and in the Middle East as the state-owned company seeks to redress an over-dependence on its home market.

The utility wants 25 percent of revenue to come from outside South Africa by 2025, acting Chief Executive Officer Siyabonga Gama, 48, said in a Sept. 10 interview at Bloomberg’s office in Johannesburg. That compares with 4.2 percent of its 61.2 billion rand ($4.5 billion) in the 12 months through March this year. The company has started a process to form a new unit, to be called Transnet International Holdings, which will oversee the foreign expansion, he said.

We have a fairly good idea where it’s going to come from and how,” Gama said. “We are not just looking at Africa, we are also looking at the Middle East. There are a number of things that we are working on.”

Transnet leadership believes the company depends too much on South Africa, where it operates more than 20,000 kilometers (12,430 miles) of rail  network and facilitates 98 percent of South Africa’s global trade through
its eight ports. The utility will seek to apply its expertise and skills acquired at home to ports, rail and pipelines in new markets, Gama said.

The opportunities for expansion include consulting, training, and facilities-management contracts, as well as competing for, and operating concessions, Gama said. The international unit will be capitalized with “a decent amount” of funding, he said. Transnet last week signed a contract in Cotonou, Benin, to advise on the port there’s container terminal.

“We will try and improve their efficiencies, with the view that we will
make some further investments once we have helped them with the port
master plan,” Gama said of the Cotonou deal. “It’s small but it indicates
the direction that we are taking in a number of these markets.”

Transnet already operates in other African countries including Mozambique, Botswana, Zimbabwe and Zambia. Most of the foreign activities are rail-related, Gama said. The company also sees opportunities to invest in new natural-gas pipelines in South Africa, as well as in countries including Tanzania and Mozambique.

Gama, the head of Transnet’s freight rail unit, was named acting CEO of the company in April, after Brian Molefe was seconded to head Eskom Holdings SOC Ltd., South Africa’s state power company. Transnet Chief Financial Officer Anoj Singh has also moved to Eskom on an acting basis.

Source: bloomberg


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South Africa: Transport Hosts Summit for Women in Transport, 20 to 22 August

PRESS RELEASE

The Department of Transport, under the leadership of Minister Dipuo Peters and Deputy Minister Sindisiwe Chikunga will bring together women from across South Africa to engage in robust deliberations and formulate a solid strategy, plan and time frames regarding tangible economic transformation and empowerment opportunities for women in the transport sector during a three-day Summit that will be held in Gauteng from 20 to 22 August 2015. The Summit will take place under the theme: “Transport Sector, Moving Women Empowerment and Transformation Forward”

It will bring together professional women from across the economic and social landscape, women in rural areas who are beneficiaries and who are going to benefit from transport programmes and women from various formations across the country to engage on this critical initiative.

The delegates will deliberate and engage on women empowerment opportunities in the various modes of transport: rail, roads, aviation, maritime and public transport.

The Ministries of Women, Small Business Development, Communication, Telecommunications and MECs for Roads and Transport and Police and Community Safety and Liaison from all provinces will be among some of the dignitaries attending the Summit.

Department of Transport

Source: allafrica


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Transnet, DBSA partner to accelerate private sector partnerships

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. Print Send to Friend 0 0 The development bank would provide funding and expertise for the PSP preparation work, including transaction advisory services, to enable the freight logistics company to successfully partner with the private sector in deploying certain infrastructure under its R300-billion Market Demand Strategy (MDS).

“Finding innovative funding solutions is a key element of the MDS. Partnerships with the private sector will not only broaden our sources of funding for capital

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investments, they will give us access to private sector skills and expertise,” Transnet acting group CEO Siyabonga Gama said in a statement on Monday. The agreement would see DBSA share in project preparation funding; contribute financial and project management skills and capacity; provide indicative terms and amounts to expedite funding of PSP project execution; and provide strategic support for the execution of Transnet’s PSP programme.

The initiative would also enable Transnet to manage risks and provide alternative procurement tools for large infrastructure projects. “Increasing private sector participation in South Africa’s infrastructure investment programme is part of DBSA’s mandate as a development finance institution. In addition, once a project is ready to go to market, DBSA will also be eligible to compete as one of the funders,” added DBSA CEO Patrick Dlamini.

The projects in the PSP portfolio included the manganese common user loading facility, in the Northern Cape; the Grootvlei coal loading facility, in Mpumalanga; the Tambo Springs inland container terminal, in Ekurhuleni, Gauteng; and the container terminal at the Durban Dig-Out Port.

Source: Engineering News


 

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Sanral to receive R12.5-billion cash boost

The South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) would receive a R12.5-billion cash boost from government this year, transport minister Dipuo Peters announced on Tuesday.
Delivering her budget vote in Parliament, Peters said this would form part of government’s commitments to upgrading non-toll roads in the country.
“Government is investing R1.1-billion in the upgrade of the R573 Moloto Road,” said Peters.
“We have also set aside R12.5-billion for Sanral’s non-toll roads, which constitutes 85 percent of the national road network of 21,403 kilometres across the country.”
At a media briefing earlier in the day, Sanral chief executive Nazir Alli said any cash injection should not be misconstrued as pointing to liquidity problems within Sanral.
“There’s two parts to SANRAL’s business. The one part is a non-toll road part of it which constitutes 25 percent of our road portfolio out of a total of 21,403 kilometres of roads and then there’s the 3,120 kilometres of road which are tolled roads which is only 15 percent of our portfolio.
“It is wrong to conflate the two and to turn around and say we are facing financial difficulty,” Allie said.
“We believe that in SANRAL…that we’ve been very prudent in terms of how we have managed our business, so we’re not running into bankruptcy or anything of that sort…”
Alli conceded though that they’ve been batting to raise money as a result of uncertainty over the Gauteng Freeway Improvement Project (GFIP).
In January, a panel appointed by Gauteng premier David Makhura in 2014 made various recommendations on cushioning the impact of e-tolls in Gauteng on the poor and middle class in the province.
These included that the current e-toll system be reviewed to ensure affordability, equity, fairness, administrative simplicity and sustainability.
“Unfortunately for the moment, no, there hasn’t been an appetite for our paper because of the uncertainty that has been created,” Alli said when asked if the process was affecting SANRAL’s ability to sell bonds.
“Were very confident that once that pronouncement has been made by the honourable deputy president of our country that…certainty will return and the appetite for our paper will return as well.”
SANRAL was awaiting an announcement by deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa, who is leading consultations on what the final funding model for the GFIP will be.
“We see the light at the end of the tunnel as far as the GFIP is concerned,” Alli said.
Source: eNCA

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Ethiopia charting a path to a low carbon future with light rail

By Eric Mutei

At the end of a long day at work, the only thing you want to do is get home quickly. You’re exhausted from dealing with your boss, terrible colleagues or crazy clients. But traveling home is just another drawn out nightmare to endure, thanks to the woes of the transport sector. The only reliable and affordable means of transportation for a common city dweller in Addis Ababa is the state operated city buses. Apart from the long stretchy queues, these buses are overcrowded and groaning heavily under the weight of the city residents. Not to mention the endless traffic jams. This is the daily transit scenario in the streets of Addis Ababa.

The scene above was the common case of daily transit until the Addis Ababa Light Rail Transit (LRT) project launched in December 2011. The rail is a first in clean initiative in the horn of Africa to enhance public mobility. The light railway of Ethiopia is the first urban metro light rail scheme to be built in a sub-Saharan country outside of South Africa.

The Ethiopian Railways Corp. (ERC) began construction of the double track electrified light rail transit project in 2012. It stretches 23 kilometers covering the better part of the city, and is a welcome relief for the city residents. The light railway consists of two lines running for a total distance of 32km with underground and over ground sections, 39 stations, and two operators that are the Ethiopian Railways Corporation and Shenzhen Metro. The 41 three-section 70% low-floor light rail vehicles are designed to run in pairs at up to 70 km/h. All have tinted windows and rubber components specified to resist premature aging from the effects of strong sunlight at altitudes of 2400 m.

ERC intends to register the Addis Ababa Light Rail Transit project as a Clean Development Mechanism project. The rail project is one of the pillars of a green growth strategy in the transport chapter of Ethiopia’s Climate Resilient Green Economy (CRGE), to consolidate greenhouse gas emissions of the country at 2010 levels. The vision of this rail project was to see a modern railway infrastructure and service by an efficient railway company that supports Ethiopia’s endeavor in building a globally competitive economy that uses electricity and connects the country’s development centers and links with ports of neighboring countries.

The Climate-Resilient Green Economy (CRGE) strategy (PDF) lays down a plan for Ethiopia to develop a carbon neutral, green economy by 2025. According to the CRGE strategy report, under the BAU scenario, emissions from the transport sector will increase from 5 Mt CO2e in 2010 to 41 Mt CO2e in 2030. The development and implementation of a National Railway Network and the Light Rail Transit and supported projects (Transit Oriented Development) will result in significant GHG emission reductions of 9 Mt CO2e/year by 2030.

Building electrified railways lays the base for low carbon transport in Ethiopia and will assure clean transport tomorrow. Railroads can contribute towards severing Ethiopia’s economic growth from diesel fuelled trucks. Availability of reliable and clean transport is a precondition for Ethiopia’s development. Trains can make use of a domestic energy source, hydropower, and help fuel the economy in a green way. The clean character of the fuel without emission of greenhouse gasses and the durable economic structure without dependency on imported fuels is sustainable.

Years ago the air was cleaner, but with the drastic growth in population, more than 4 million, the number of 20 year or older vehicles and developmental projects, the air is polluted above the traffic gridlock. The light rail train as cleaner public transist gives a reprieve to the public, combined with the hope for more electric cars, it is expected to reduce the annual greenhouse gas emissions from the transport sector to less than 9 tonnes by 2030. It is an environmentally friendly venture aimed at combating the ever growing pollution in the city. It is not only convenient, providing transport for over 15,000 people per one direction and 60,000 in all four directions, but affordable for the residents. It is a milestone in helping Ethiopia sustain its growing economy, as Ethiopia is one of the fastest growing economies in the world.

The Light Rail Train has brought glimmers of hope to the common man. At the very least, one can get home easily at the end of the day without the crazy hassle of looking for and struggling in transit. The commuting city residents can breathe easier using clean transit as they take part in building their nation.

Source: Nazret.com


 

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ABB to supply for South Africa’s electric rail fleet

ABB has grabbed a $50 million supply contract from Bombardier Transportation to support the freight locomotives that will help form the backbone of the electric rail fleet in South Africa.

ABB will provide traction transformers and other related equipment for 240 freight locomotives operating under this railway network.

The order was received in the fourth quarter of 2014.

The traction units will be installed in Bombardier’s TRAXX locomotives which will be manufactured in South Africa.

These transformers will supply electricity for trains running on the dual 3kV direct-current and 25kV alternating-current overhead voltage network.

Since 1998, ABB has been supplying traction transformers for various electrical locomotives projects involved with Bombardier.

In addition, ABB traction transformers are designed to support heavy freight loads over distances of more than 1,000 kilometers.

These transformers are engineered for demanding environments and help power trains that operate on tracks under challenging conditions like multiple power systems, steep inclines, tight curves, excessive wear, voltage drops in long sections and extreme temperatures.

Already, more than half the world’s electric locomotives and train sets are powered by ABB.

A leading transformer manufacturer throughout the world, ABB offers both liquid-filled and dry-type transformers inclusive of lifetime services such as replacement of parts and components.

South Africa plans to invest nearly $5 billion to expand the rail fleet for increasing the passenger travel and also to enhance its efficiency to transport iron ore as part of the global exporting.

South Africa aims to boost the share of freight shipped by rail significantly over the next decade.

Source: GreenTech Lead


 

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