The future of the heavy haul industry, a crucial cog in the global logistics chain, remains on shaky ground in light of adverse global market conditions that continue to threaten the profitability and sustainability of heavy rail operators around the globe.
This challenge is the central focus for heavy haul rail executives, professionals and engineers, who are currently in Cape Town to attend the 11th International Heavy Haul Association (IHHA) Conference.
The event will unpack an array of technical topics, including insights and updates on heavy haul developments, rail expansion plans and global technological advancements.
“The conference theme ‘Advancing Heavy Haul Technologies and Operations in a Changing World’ is highly appropriate given the state of the market and the role that innovation can play in addressing the issues that plague this sector,” said Brian Monakali, Transnet Executive, International Heavy Haul Association Deputy Chairman and South African Heavy Haul Association Chairman.
Monakali said the conference will share global expertise on how to improve efficiencies, safety and the viability of the industry.
“The enlightening discussions, plenaries and workshops will focus on fact-finding and shifts to drive the industry forward.”
“We are confident that the papers and presentations will provide industry executives and professionals with key insights needed to ensure that their operations are able to flourish despite the pressure of slower economic growth around the globe,” says Monakali.
Transnet will host a technical tour to the Saldanha port facilities and Iron Ore Heavy Haul line, one of the largest on the African West Coast.
Over the next few days, conference delegates will be given an opportunity to visit the manganese and iron ore handling facilities, tippler operations and the iron ore line operating centre as well as drive along a section of iron ore line up to Elands Bay.
“We look forward to welcoming the industry’s leading players, as well as young professionals making their mark in the Heavy Haul Railway sector,” says Monakali.
The International Heavy Haul Association Conference will run till 6 September 2017 at the Cape Town International Conference Centre.