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Prasa hit by R1bn loss

Oct 13 2011 12:18
James-Brent Styan

Cape Town - The passenger rail agency of south Africa (Prasa) has reported a loss of R1.019bn for the 2010/11 financial year.

Prasa reported a loss of R1.26bn in the previous financial year.

Prasa CEO Lucky Montana told parliament on Thursday that passenger rail did not generate sufficient resources to recapitalise itself.

"Metrorail passengers are generally lower income earners, which makes it difficult to increase ticket prices."

Prasa is the owner of the inter city passenger trains, Metrorail as well as the long distance rail operators, Shoshaloza Meyl.

Prasa also operates Intersite, a property management company and Autopax, which is a national passenger bus service.

Montana said Prasa struggled with the high cost of operating an old railway system with rolling stock older than 40 years on average.

He said the agency suffered a serious decline in rolling stock availability and reliability in the past year.

"The result was a decline in passenger trips from 633 million in 2009/10 to 471 million in the past year."

He however, said the group remains positive, albeit with a number of challenges.

"We have started rolling out our recapitalisation programme as well as implementing a new signalling system. These projects will take a number of years to complete."

metrorail  |  prasa  |  rail


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