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South Africa and Botswana to improve rail freight links

South Africa and Botswana to improve rail freight links

SOUTH Africa and Botswana have agreed to fund the improvement and extension of rail links between the countries in a bid to boost trade and better connect Botswana to export markets, South African state-owned logistics firm Transnet said. Transnet Freight Rail (TFR) will collaborate with Botswana Rail (BR) to fix parts of the 126 km (78 miles) rail line between Swartruggens, in South Africa's North West province, and Mafikeng, on the border with Botswana, helping South Africa's landlocked northern neighbour get its minerals, including thermal coal, to market. European countries are scrambling to meet their coal needs after a ban…
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South Africa arrests former Transnet executives for alleged graft

South Africa arrests former Transnet executives for alleged graft

SOUTH African prosecutors said that several former executives at state-owned ports and freight rail company Transnet had been arrested for alleged corruption during former president Jacob Zuma's time in power. The National Prosecuting Authority's Investigating Directorate (ID) and police arrested the former executives on Friday morning, after which they appeared in court, the ID said in statements. The accused, including Transnet's former CEO, Siyabonga Gama, were charged with crimes such as fraud, corruption and money laundering, and granted bail. None of the accused have entered a plea, a spokesman for the Investigating Directorate said. Reuters could not immediately reach Gama,…
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SA coal mining companies turn to trucks

SA coal mining companies turn to trucks

NELSON BANYA and HELEN REID MINING companies in South Africa have resorted to trucking coal to ports to meet a surge in European demand since the war in Ukraine started, bypassing the deteriorating rail infrastructure they blame for billions of dollars in lost revenue. Poor maintenance, a lack of spare parts for trains, copper cable theft and vandalism have disrupted state logistics firm Transnet's freight rail services, causing coal and iron ore exports to fall in recent years. In April, Transnet declared force majeure on contracts with producers but with coal prices near record highs, mining firms including Glencore have turned…
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Second fire in a week hits South Africa’s Richards Bay port

Second fire in a week hits South Africa’s Richards Bay port

SOUTH Africa's port operator Transnet is investigating a second fire in a week at the Richards Bay port, a commodities export hub, after a blaze broke out at a terminal there on Wednesday evening. The latest fire affected the conveyor system for Transnet Port Terminals, the company said, disrupting some of its operations. "Business continuity plans have been implemented and engagements are taking place with affected customers," Transnet said in a statement. The fire had been extinguished and no injuries were reported, the company said, adding that it was investigating the incident and another fire a week earlier at the…
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SA tribunal freezes billions linked to Chinese rail firm

SA tribunal freezes billions linked to Chinese rail firm

A South African tribunal has frozen R4.2-billion rand ($296.84 million) linked to the local unit of CRRC Corp as investigators probe the Chinese firm's deals with state-owned logistics group Transnet. The Special Investigating Unit (SIU), which investigates corruption at state entities, said in a statement it believes the funds are "proceeds of unlawful activity". "The SIU together with Transnet approached the Tribunal to freeze the accounts following an intensive investigation ... which raised the suspicion that CRRC paid kickbacks," it said. CRRC E-Loco Supply Ltd was not reachable on Thursday. Parent company CRRC Corp - the world's biggest train maker…
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