South Africa Freight Transport Report Q2 2013 - New Market Report

From: Fast Market Research, Inc.
Published: Mon May 20 2013

BMI maintains a cautiously optimistic stance with regards to South Africa's freight transport sector in 2013. Although there are risks to the mining sector from a potential hard landing in China, our mining desk believes that growth will continue, which bodes well for the rail and port sectors in particular.

Headline Industry Data

* Rail freight growth will be 6.2% in 2013, and will average 5.7% to 2017.
* Richards Bay Port's tonnage throughput in 2013 is forecast to increase by 1.3%. Over the medium-term we project a 3.9% average annual increase.
* 2013 total trade growth is forecast at 3.8, up from the estimated 4.6% expansion in 2012.
* Road freight volumes are set to expand by 6.2% in 2013, and to average 5.9% over our forecast period.

Full Report Details at

Key Industry Trends

Transnet May Reduce Capital Expenditure Programme By ZAR50bn: South Africa's state-owned transportation company Transnet may reduce ZAR50bn (US$5.43bn) from its planned ZAR300bn (US $32.60bn) capital expenditure programme if strike actions affect the sector or economic growth eases, according to Transnet CEO Brian Molefe. The programme is scheduled to be implemented over the next seven years, Molefe added.

Transnet Intends To Develop Open-Access Coal Terminal: South Africa's state-owned transportation company Transnet intends to develop a new ZAR15bn (US$1.62bn) open-access coal terminal at Richards Bay. The conceptual study for the terminal has concluded under a government-backed plan to expand export capacity for emerging black coal miners, according to programme director for the project, Sudesh Maharaj, who made a statement in March.

TFR Runs 14 Magnetite Trains On Weekly Basis: A total of 14 magnetite trains are being operated by Transnet Freight Rail (TFR), the rail division of South Africa's state-owned freight transport company Transnet, to Richards Bay on a weekly basis. This enables TFR to rail 66,150 tons of magnetite per week.

Key Risks To Outlook

Significant risks are posed to South Africa by the global headwinds facing the world economy - namely the ongoing European debt crisis and the potential of a hard landing in China. China in particular could be a real concern if growth continues to slow and the country begins to use its stockpiles of coal and iron ore, which would hit volumes of the commodities being transported on South African rail and through South African ports. The risk of strikes appear more elevated in the wake of the Marikana massacre of 2012, which could affect freight transport volumes in 2013.

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