President Ramaphosa highlighted in his presentation of the Economic Reconstruction and Recovery Plan (ERRP) to Parliament in October last year that rail lies at the heart of reviving South Africa’s economy.
As part of government’s rail drive, the move to introduce third-party access to the country’s railway network is one of the most significant policy developments in recent years. Minister of Finance Tito Mboweni is clear: rail has supported the economy for decades. Now, with infrastructure needing repairs or replacement, partnerships with the private sector and other players are critical.
Rail has long been the backbone of the South African logistics and transport value chain, and will become even more critical in a post-Covid-19 environment. It is cheaper, cleaner and more efficient than road transport, and lends itself to carrying cargo in a sanitised, minimalcontact environment.
The case for rail, we believe, is clear and compelling. Rail remains the most viable option for the transportation of freight like grain, automotive components and fully built car units, and minerals. It will reduce road congestion, and free our roads up to carry commuter traffic and sensitive cargo like perishables and cold storage items.
Source: Inside Mining Magazine (Page 12-14)