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Lobito Corridor to Enhance Freight Capacity with 275 New Wagons from South Africa's Galison Manufacturing

In furtherance of the commitment to invest $455 million in Angola, the Lobito Atlantic Railway—a consortium of Trafigura, Mota-Engil, and Vecturis—has awarded a contract to South Africa's Galison Manufacturing to supply 275 container wagons over 30 months. This investment, part of a larger procurement plan for 35 locomotives and 1555 wagons, aims to enhance the Lobito Corridor's freight capacity.



The Lobito Atlantic Railway, a consortium of Trafigura, Mota-Engil, and Vecturis, has previously pledged to invest $455 million in Angola, much of which will go towards procuring 35 locomotives and 1555 wagons.


On May 21, 2024, South Africa's Galison Manufacturing was awarded a contract to supply 275 container wagons over a period of 30 months to the Lobito Atlantic Railway. The value of the contract has not been disclosed, but it is likely valued somewhere between $35 and $50 million.


The container wagons will be manufactured at Galison’s state-of-the-art factory in Welkom, South Africa, using the latest technology and equipment. This includes CNC drills, profiling machines, and presses, ensuring precision and efficiency in production. The welding process will be conducted using advanced robotic cells to enhance quality and consistency. Each wagon will be constructed from high-strength steel, reducing its empty weight to 13.5 tonnes. This design optimizes the cargo-carrying capacity, enabling each wagon to transport more freight while maintaining structural integrity and durability.


“The contract was secured amidst rigorous international competition, requiring Galison to meet exacting price points and stringent technical specifications... This order is among the most significant in our company’s history. It underscores our expanding presence within the South African Development Community (SADC), as Galison-made wagons will soon be operational across nearly all its member countries, including South Africa, Mozambique, Namibia, Zambia, Tanzania, and the DRC,” says Galison CEO, Andrew Thorburn.

The procurement is a positive development for the Lobito Corridor and indicates that progress is being made by the Lobito Atlantic Railway to honor its investment commitments and to secure new users. The consortium began operating the 1067 mm-gauge line, running for 1744 kilometers, in July 2023. The 30-year concession granted to operate the railway can be extended for an additional 20 years if investment thresholds (i.e., $455 million) are met.

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The Lobito Corridor Investment Promotion Authority ("LCIPA" or "the IPA") is a permanent multi-stakeholder engagement agency tasked to link all public and private entities interested in advancing and participating in the Lobito Corridor. Its main goals are to maximize and promote trade, investment, and economic integration among and between the three African nations of Angola, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Zambia. 

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