Beitbridge Bulawayo Railways (BBR), the pioneering Public-Private Partnership (PPP) in Southern Africa, continues to set new benchmarks in the region’s rail industry. Operating the BBR line connecting Beitbridge and Bulawayo, BBR has established itself as a trailblazer, with a comprehensive journey spanning from Beitbridge to Victoria Falls through a collaborative agreement with the National Railways of Zimbabwe (NRZ).
BBR’s unwavering commitment to delivering efficient rail services is evident through its successful transportation of various goods, including Copper, Sulphur, Clinker, Coal, and Limestone for local client PPC. With a 30-year concession guiding its operations, BBR is not only focused on current services but also exploring future projects that will complement its existing operations, ensuring long-term growth even beyond the concession period.
Raymond Shoniwa, General Manager of BBR, highlights the evolving landscape of the regional rail industry, stating, “Regional rail operations have predominantly consisted of state-owned entities, but we are witnessing a shift with the entry of private operators. This signals positive developments and a promising future. BBR is optimistic about the growing interest in privatizing specific sections of railway operations, presenting opportunities for expansion not only in Zimbabwe but also across other countries in Southern Africa.”
As part of its commitment to staying at the forefront of industry advancements, BBR is actively participating in the upcoming Southern African Railway Associations (SARA) Conference and Exhibition, scheduled for October 25 – 27, 2023, at the Gallagher Convention Centre in Johannesburg. This significant event provides rail professionals with a unique opportunity to gather, collaborate, and exchange valuable insights.
BBR’s commercial department will be present at the SARA event to gather feedback from customers, further enhancing their performance. Additionally, BBR’s ICT team will stay abreast of global trends in telecommunications, locomotive technology, and wagon tracking. This knowledge exchange will contribute to BBR’s future planning and reinforce its position as a leader in the industry.
The SARA Conference and Exhibition bring together regional CEOs of rail operators, fostering collaboration and enabling delegates to gain insights into strategic plans and future requirements. This knowledge exchange helps industry professionals align their focus and product offerings with the needs of the sector for the next five to ten years.
Encouraging suppliers and OEMs in the rail sector to seize this opportunity, Shoniwa states, “By positioning their businesses and engaging with regional railway CEOs, suppliers and OEMs can contribute to the collective growth of the industry. With the mining sector expanding and cargo volumes on the rise, the rail industry in Southern Africa is entering a crucial growth phase. The SARA Conference and Exhibition will play a vital role in advancing regional integration and trade across the continent.”
As the rail industry in Southern Africa enters a phase of expansion, conferences like SARA become increasingly vital. These events provide a unique platform for industry professionals to share insights, discuss challenges, and explore opportunities for seamless regional integration and trade. Through open dialogue and partnerships, the rail industry can collectively overcome obstacles, leverage new operating models, and deliver enhanced capacity and quality of services.
BBR’s active participation in the SARA event demonstrates its commitment to continuous improvement and collaboration. Industry players and stakeholders are encouraged to join in and actively engage with regional railway CEOs, including BBR.
To find out how to best position your business and engage with the BBR team at the upcoming SARA Conference and Exhibition, please be in touch with our events team.