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Transport Minister Jeff Radebe says his department has established
a committee to oversee the improvement of the country's public
transport system ahead of the 2010 Soccer World Cup.
Radebe was speaking yesterday morning during the Parliamentary
Media Briefing Week.
He said public transport was a critical input factor in the South
African economy, however, experience showed that rail passenger
transport was haphazard and offered low service standards.
"The major impediment to trade and investment in our economy is the
problem of significant operational problems caused by bottlenecks
in the system.
"The rail system is unreliable, the road freight system is under
enormous pressure and our ports suffer from poor throughput," the
Radebe said the lack of point-to-point infrastructure as well as
outdated managerial and operational systems were amongst other
things that needed to be addressed.
He therefore said the Gauteng-KwaZulu Natal corridor had been
identified as an important pilot project after which attention
would then be paid to the Cape Town-BeitBridge and the
"In the process of developing these corridors, we will not neglect
other important corridor investments, such as the Sishen-Ngqura
development, those associated with spatial development," he
Radebe said there were plans to develop a strategy to link public
transport considerations as well as the extended public works
programme where rural roads were major initiatives and community
"This requires speeding up earlier plans to revitalise and re-open
marginal railway lines to encourage local development.
"Some of these will use the current Umtata-AmaBele/East London line
upgrade as a pilot study," he said.
Radebe said his department would continue with other programmes
including the promotion of road transport safety, aviation and
maritime transport issues. - BuaNews