Chinese locomotives run in Africa ahead of schedule
Updated: 2013-11-19 Xinhua
PRETORIA - CSR, China's leading electric locomotive manufacturer, delivered on Monday the first batch of two locomotives to its South African partner ahead of schedule.
A show run was held at the Pyramid South depot in northern Pretoria, with the driver describing the design as simple and practical.
CSR Zhuzhou Electric Locomotive Company inked a contract with South Africa's Transnet in October 2012 to deliver a total of 95 locomotives. The deal went into effect eight months ago.
Siyabonga Gama, head of Transnet Freight Rail, lauded the proficiency of the Chinese manufacturer, saying it usually takes 18 to 24 months to design and produce such a prototype locomotive.
Zhou Qinghe, board director and general manager of CSR Zhuzhou company, said involvement in international projects and overseas manufacture bases enabled the company to fulfill the contract ahead of time.
The company has provided over 10 countries with electric locomotives and mass transit vehicles, Zhou added.
For his part, chief of the Transnet Group, Brian Molefe, hailed the arrival of the new locomotives as a symbol of deep cooperation between China and South Africa.
He also said the CSR has been training Transnet employees and supporting its engineering team to prepare for local production.