South African state-owned enterprise company Transnet has received the first TRAXX locomotive from Bombardier Transportation, which is expected to be used for freight traffic applications.

Bombardier is set to deliver 240 units of the electric locomotive as part of a contract that was originally awarded in March 2014.

"We are committed to South Africa through local production, a strong local supply chain, job creation and transfer of technology."

The trains will be used to transport coal and ore on various routes travelling between mines, ports and urban areas.

Bombardier Transportation South Africa managing director Aubrey Lekwane said: “We are committed to South Africa through local production, a strong local supply chain, job creation and transfer of technology, in line with the latest localisation and Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment programme (B-BBEE) requirements.”

Transnet Freight Rail awarded the deal to Bombardier under its National Infrastructure Plan, which includes a €30bn investment for the modernisation of the national rail system.

A total of 15 of the 240 electric multi-system locomotives have been completed to date. The trains are anticipated to begin operations next year.

Bombardier noted that more than 60% of the total contract value of $1.099bn will be spent on locally manufactured materials, components and services for the locomotive programme.

The project will see the involvement of nearly 90 South African companies.

The Bombardier Mitrac high-power propulsion equipment will be produced at the company’s factory in Isando, Johannesburg, while DCD in Boksburg will be responsible for manufacturing the car bodies.

Transnet Engineering will produce the bogies and also carry out the assembly, commissioning and testing in Durban.

In addition, Bombardier has partnered with the Qtectic consortium to supply the first three New Generation Rollingstock (NGR) trainsets to the South-East Queensland rail network in Australia as part of a separate development.

The project is being conducted in partnership with the Queensland State Government, Department of Transport and Main Roads (TMR) and Queensland Rail (QR).