New high-speed trains planned for South Africa: Minister

South Africa plans to introduce a new high-speed rail system as part of its new national rail policy, says Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula.

Speaking to the media on Monday (May 9), Mbalula said the framework will serve as the basis for the creation of new high-speed rail corridors across the country.

“The framework will determine the strategic objectives for high-speed rail in the country and determine the criteria to be used to determine and prioritize these corridors. The feasibility studies on the proposed high-speed services will be conducted by the department (of transport) led by the framework. “

In August 2021, Mbalula announced that the government had initiated a feasibility study to introduce high-speed rail development between Pretoria, Durban and Johannesburg. Mbalula said the planned development will carry passengers and freight.

In May 2020, Transport Director General Alec Moemi said that a frame for a new High Speed ​​Rail (HSR) network in South Africa has already been developed and implemented. He added that the project will not be financed solely by the government, but will be financed through investor financing and private sector participation.

The Chinese government has also indicated that it is interested in investing in a high-speed rail project between Durban and Johannesburg.

Speaking at a job fair in Johannesburg at the end of the week of April, Ambassador Chen Xiaodong said South Africa and other countries are “very welcome to board the bullet train” of China’s development.

“China is actively working on feasibility studies for a small port project. We support Chinese enterprises to participate in the Mzimvubu River project and provide financial support. We will also continue to connect with South Africa on major projects such as the Joburg-Durban high-speed railway, “she said.

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