December 8, 2021

Government wants to build a high-speed rail between Joburg, Pretoria and Durban

The federal government is conducting a feasibility examine to introduce a high-speed rail growth between Pretoria, Johannesburg and Durban, says transport minister Fikile Mbalula.

Presenting to parliament’s choose committee on transport on Wednesday (25 August), Mbalula stated that the deliberate growth will carry passengers in addition to freight.

He stated that the federal government can also be trying to overhaul its freight-by-rail plans, and is engaged on an up to date rail coverage for the nation, presently being developed as a white paper.

Mbalula warned that the latest unrest seen in components of KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng will trigger long-term harm to the nation’s cargo and freight trade. The closure of the N3 had a vital affect on visitors volumes that depend on the freeway and that the most important route usually has visitors is in extra of 6,000 heavy automobiles per day.

The four-day closure of the N3 meant R12 billion value of products didn’t arrive at their meant locations, he stated.

He stated that affected truck operators – working a cross-border service – are already actively looking for various routes by means of different Southern African international locations, avoiding South Africa due to the unrest.

“Cargo owners are also looking at transporting their cargo through Namibia, Angola. Mozambique and further north,” he stated. “If this trend continues, South Africa is at a risk of losing its gateway status for transit freight.”

The redevelopment of South Africa’s rail and freight sector is a key focus of the federal government’s infrastructure plans over the following 30 years.

On 11 August, the Division of Public Works and Infrastructure (DPWI) revealed a nationwide infrastructure plan, specializing in the federal government’s main developments up till 2050.

The DPWI stated that by 2050 freight transport ought to facilitate home and cross border motion of products to allow industrialisation, diversification, commerce and growth.

“It is proposed that the balance of transport projects need reassessment in anticipation of the shift of cargo off-road to rail. Transnet Freight Rail (should) complete its accounting and commercial separation and meaningfully accommodate third party operators by 2022/3.”

The plan will even see the institution of each the Impartial Ports Authority and a single transport financial regulator by 2022/23, with a plan to combine rail, highway, ports and intermodal hubs and freight villages by 2022/3.

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