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Swazilink

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Swazilink is a planned railway in South Africa and Eswatini.[1][2]

Route

Swazilink route mapThick red line: Railway line in serviceThin red line: Existing railway line out of service
Swazilink route map
Thick red line: Railway line in service
Thin red line: Existing railway line out of service

The main railway would run 146 km from Lothair in Mpumalanga in South Africa to Sidvokodvo Junction in Eswatini.[3] This would reduce the pressure on the Richards Bay line, removing general freight traffic, hence allowing more coal export trains and reducing the volume of coal transported by road.[4] There are also plans for 600 km of connecting railways, and this route fits with several other Transnet infrastructure projects which concentrate on coal transport.[5] This would also allow further development of the railway which takes coal from the Waterberg Coalfield via Ermelo to Richards Bay; the Waterberg coalfields have South Africa's biggest undeveloped coal reserves.[6]

Project

The project officially began in January 2012 and was initially expected to cost between R15bn and R17bn, with the South African government paying up to R12bn.[3] The Swazi government suggested that PPP would be used, or another source of external funding. The Lothair - Sidvokodvo line itself was forecast to cost R7.3 billion, and another R8.6 billion would be spent on connecting railways. The first trains were expected to start running in 2015[3] or 2016.[4]

In July 2014, Swazi Railways estimated that the link would cost R17 billion and could enter service in 2017.[7]

Transnet is acquiring General Electric locomotives for the line.[citation needed]

References

  1. ^ "Transnet buys trains and launches Swazilink". Supply Management. 15 January 2012. Retrieved 22 January 2012.
  2. ^ "SA, Swaziland in major rail investment". SouthAfrica.info. 13 January 2012. Archived from the original on 26 January 2012. Retrieved 22 January 2012.
  3. ^ a b c "Ceremony launches Swazilink project". Railway Gazette International. 12 January 2012. Retrieved 22 January 2012.
  4. ^ a b "Transnet's Swazi link". The Sowetan. 13 January 2012. Retrieved 22 January 2012.
  5. ^ "South Africa: Govt, Swaziland in Major Rail Investment". allAfrica.com. Retrieved 22 January 2012.
  6. ^ "Transnet: Swazi link is Waterberg saviour". miningmx. Retrieved 22 January 2012.
  7. ^ "NEW SWAZILAND LINK LINE TO RUN IN 2017". Railways Africa. Retrieved 2 July 2014.
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Swazilink
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