Transnet moves ahead with plan to set up rail leasing venture with partner
Transnet Engineering (TE) has issued a request for proposals (RFP) for a partner to establish a rail rolling stock leasing company, which would supply wagons and locomotives to train operating companies (TOCs) that could arise as a result of reforms designed to open the domestic network to third-party operators.
The closing date for responses to the RFP has been set as June 30.
TE reports that the scope of the partnership will include:
- The acquisition of capital assets;
- developing rolling stock and port equipment leasing capabilities;
- leasing rolling stock assets in South Africa and to markets outside of South Africa;
the development of business opportunities; and
- ensuring that the capital assets are maintained and available for leasing to customers.
“The establishment of a leasing company is aligned with the policy directive for rail reform, and aims to create a more enabling environment by lowering barriers to entry for new TOCs who will be utilising available slots on the network in line with the regime for third-party access,” TE explained in a April 4 statement released to announce the launch of the tender.
It noted that leasing had emerged as a trend among global rail and port operators and would also help to diversify TE’s revenue sources, including by increasing demand for its core business of manufacturing, re-manufacturing, maintenance and engineering services.
In a recent interview with Engineering News, Transnet CE Portia Derby said the absence of rail leasing capacity had emerged as a key constraint when Transnet Freight Rail attempted to sell 16 slots to private operators in 2022. Only one slot was eventually sold to Traxtion for two years.
The Transnet board had, thus, approved the creation of a leasing company under TE.