SA manufacturer available to work with Chinese rail firm on Transnet contract

A south African based rail manufacturer has responded to claims that Chinese rail company, China South Rail (CSR) is asking the government for a R5.3-billion to continue to supply new locomotives to Transnet.

CSR reportedly said that they are unable to find local procurement partners in South Africa who can deliver what they are looking for.

CEO of Commuter Transport Engineering, Patricia Norris says CSR did approach them and did site visits but nothing came of it.

They requested documentations and some technical information numerous occasion as well as pricing. The discussions were never followed up, we made inquiries but nothing came of it.

Patricia Norris, CEO of Commuter Transport Engineering

Norris says it's possible to enter into a partnership with CSR, adopting a proven format in which they previously partnered with other manufacturing companies.

She says they have produced 186 state of the art locomotives for Transnet in the past.

We are free and available to engage with the DTI and CSR to support them...

Patricia Norris, CEO of Commuter Transport Engineering

South African Federation of Trade Unions (SAFTU) general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi says it is distasteful that R25 billion was given to CSR to manufacture locomotives which South African firms have capacity to produce the same.

He says South Africans are losing jobs because Transnet is sidelining local companies these contracts.

This is a major slap in the face of the South African industry and the workers of this country.

Zwelinzima Vavi, Saftu general-secretary

Now we know the reason why Transnet management has decided to give a company in China R25 billion paid by tax payers is because they were going to get kickbacks calling them facilitation fees.

Zwelinzima Vavi, Saftu general-secretary

R5.3 billion has now being paid in facilitation fees to Gupta linked companies and the company they have paid is saying there are no local firms that it can purchase some of its goods from.

Zwelinzima Vavi, Saftu general-secretary

To hear the rest of the interviews on China South Rail, listen below:


This article first appeared on CapeTalk : SA manufacturer available to work with Chinese rail firm on Transnet contract


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