Alstom Ubunye, a joint venture of Alstom, has inaugurated a modernised rail factory in Ekurhuleni near Johannesburg in South Africa.

In 2016, Alstom completed the acquisition of a 51% share in South African rail company Commuter Transport & Locomotive Engineering (CTLE), of which CTE and IDC Corp hold minority shares.

After its acquisition, Alstom has refurbished the plant with advanced robots and other equipment and commenced staff training

It also received two welding certifications, EN 15085 CL1 and ISO 3834-2.

The newly launched rail factory can produce 62 bogies, 62 end under frames, 20 traction cases and ten static inverters each month in full nominal mode.

The facility will also manufacture looming, cubicles and Passenger Public Address, Closed Circuit Television and Information Systems (PACIS).

Alstom intends to use the factory to meet the growing demand in Sub-Saharan countries.

Alstom CEO and chairman Henri Poupart-Lafarge said: “Since 2016, we embarked on a huge programme and investment to modernise the Alstom Ubunye factory in order to supply components for 150 trains to Gibela Rail, where the new PRASA trains are being built.

“The unique transfer of technology from our sites across the world has created a rail factory hub with world-class competencies. We are confident in the future of South Africa and have established this industrial footprint with a long-term vision to be an African Rail Hub of excellence.”

The inaugural ceremony was attended by the Premier of Gauteng David Makhura, Member of the Mayoral Committee for Finance and Economic Development Nkosindiphile Xhakaza, the French Ambassador in South Africa Aurélien Lechevallier and Poupart-Lafarge along with 565 employees and 100 guests.

Earlier this month, Alstom received a contract to supply 42 Metropolis trains to Barcelona Metro operator Transports Metropolitans de Barcelona (TMB).