The Gautrain extension project has the capacity to create more than 211 000 direct jobs, says Gauteng MEC for Roads and Transport Ismail Vadi.
Delivering his budget vote on Thursday in the Gauteng Legislature, he said R1.6 billion is the estimated potential spend on skills development, enterprise development and supplier development. “Passenger demand for the Gautrain has exceeded projections, especially in the peak periods and has resulted in overcrowding and stifled demand. It is therefore necessary to procure more trains and invest in the system so that these trains can run efficiently over the next 10 years,” the MEC said.
The Gautrain Management Agency (GMA) has developed a business case within existing funding parameters for Gautrain and has partnered with the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) to arrange for the financing for 12 new trains. “The capital expenditure for additional rolling stock and supporting infrastructure is expected to sustain about 10 000 jobs in Gauteng. The total government revenue is expected to increase by an estimated R542 million in nominal terms between 2019 and 2023,” Vadi said.
The GMA has completed the feasibility study for the extension to the existing Gautrain network. The study was submitted to National Treasury for approval in April 2017. Since then the GMA, Provincial and National Treasury have had engagements to discuss the project in detail.
A decision on the awarding of Treasury Authorisation (TA 1) for the project is expected in the latter half of 2018. Once approval has been granted the planning and Environmental Impact Assessment of Phase 1 will begin. The Gibela rail manufacturing factory is up and running, and will be officially opened soon.
“Gibela has to supply 3 600 new Metrorail coaches at a cost of R59 billion over a 10-year period ending in 2025. This means that the new Metrorail trains are now being manufactured locally,” he said. The Metrorail rolling stock renewal programme is expected to create 33 000 direct and indirect jobs over the next decade.
The provincial department has been allocated R7.7 billion for its budget. This is apportioned to five key programmes, namely, administration (R359 million); transport infrastructure (R2.5 billion); transport operations (R2.5 billion); transport regulations (R300 million); and Gautrain (R1.9 billion).
“Every rand that will be spent from this budget should contribute to making life more liveable and inclusive for citizens in the Gauteng City Region,” the MEC said.