New SCT locos from..........
.......China! :o

Chinese firm signs Australian locomotive order
16 September 2010

AUSTRALIA: Chinese manufacturer CSR Ziyang has won its first order to supply locomotives to Australia, signing a contract worth more than 100m yuan on September 1 with an unnamed customer, understood to be SCT Logistics.

CSR Ziyang has exported almost 300 diesel locomotives to 18 countries, but these will be the first to be supplied abroad with the company's AC traction technology. They will be delivered in 2011 for use on east-west transcontinental services, and will feature customisation to suit Australian requirements which CSR said is a 'breakthrough' for the Chinese supply industry.

There was talk of an ore contract in SA won by SCT, but that rumour died off a while back, or did it??

Unless SCT are going through some massive expansion, I can't see them getting rid of the GT46ACe's off the PM9/MP9 services.
Chinese new build locos are comparatively quite cheap in so far as capital outlay goes. Around the world there are mixed reviews about their build quality, and it's probably too early to tell how durable these units are in the long term. Some first generation Chinese locos in some third world countries have barely moved a wheel in the past couple of years, and this on locos not 10 years old. Mind you, I did say third world, so there could have been other contributing factors to what ever issues caused the problems. Reportedly the quality can be controlled by owner diligence during construction, but I understand there are means by which this control is usurped. :chrissy
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The SA iron ore traffic is starting shortly I believe...the ore is being railed to the Port of Adelaide.

On the surface this looks like a bad day for local loco manufacturers and while I know this is purely a business decision - and possibly based on delivery times - I got to say SCT look pretty 'small picture' about all this - what ever money they save in the construction/delivery process is (on past export performances) most likely going to be lost in operational costs. I guess, in hindsight, SCT shouldn't have sold their Gs last year.
Nickel Plate High Speed Service
The SCT deal was signed on 1 September 2010. I asked SCT, in a journalistic capacity, about this a couple of weeks ago after my source in China alerted me to it. The response was 'cannot confirm or deny'. These are the facts as I know them to be. The six units are to be used for the IMX Cairn Hill project with SBR (read SCT) carrying the ore from Coober Pedy to Port Adelaide. A wagon deal has not been announced but it is likely that the wagons will come from China as well.
It really annoys me that we have to get this sort of information about the activities of Australian companies from overseas sources. It also annoys me that I was basically lied to when, as a journalist, I asked a fairly basic question. I shall remember this little episode, no doubt, when next an Australian company wants something published.
Cheers to all.
Henk Luf.
Henk, first up, thanks for the info.

Now this next bit is a general observation about journalists and nothing personal, but why is it that journalists cry foul every time someone is alleged to have lied to them? This story that was spun might have been protecting a commercial in confidence deal. Yet, we the end users of journalists products, are subjected to daily and outrageous... okay, I won't call it lies, but lets say mis-information, be it either from poor or lazy research, selective and limited use of given facts which alter a story, or plain misrepresentation or beat ups to pander to a readership genre (to name a but a few areas of error). If this sort of journalistic licence is so often practised why the big deal when it is served back at the industry?

Journalists seem to me to have some expectation of a god given right to information, which is to be forthcoming upon the delivery of a question. And get the shits when it is not forthcoming, despite the possibility of being very valid reasons that the information should be suppressed.

I'll leave the injustice of the threats of retribution to another topic.

Anyway, after all that, welcome to board.
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Yes Mick. You are indeed correct about some within the journalistic profession. I usually call them scribblers. And yes, bad research, lack of industry knowledge and experience and other nasty little habits have become all too common these days. I am more of the old school I would suspect and with a worldwide readership of about 35 million, it is my duty not only to be fair and accurate but also to be spot-on with the facts. Rare in this business these days? Certainly.

In the case of SCT, the company could have simply confirmed the fact and provided me with the information and that would have been it as far as the story was concerned and I would have treated the content of the information as per the information provided as well as the research already done. I would most certainly have taken any commercial aspects into consideration as well.

In recent times, and keeping in mind that I wear another hat as a EU Commission transport infrastructure advisor/planner, I have found that requests for information from overseas companies have been much more readily complied with than has been the case in Australia and I think that should change in terms of what is of benefit to both the industry as well as the general and, in our case, the more specialised public.

In all though, you are indeed correct but keep in mind that not all of us are 'scribblers'

Henk Luf.
Given that this contract wasn't much of a secret and that there was a presumption SCT was going to need rollingstock I'd say SCT were being hesitant to admit 'buying China' least for the locos. Presumably they're canny enough to know this isn't a good news story for Australian manufacturers. Of course the decision might encourage EDI Downer and United to find ways of speeding up current orders so it might not be all bad. Guess time will tell for both the industry and these imports.
Nickel Plate High Speed Service
I would suspect you might well be correct Sulla. The contract is to commence soon and initially SCT, or SBR to be precise, will have to use either leased rolling stock and/or SCT-class power. The impression that I got was the one you mentioned in terms of the fact that the Chinese MTU powered locos were not sourced from Australian manufacturers and I would also suspect that price was a consideration as well delivery dates. We shall have to see how these units perform in Australian conditions won't we.
Thanks for that reply Henk - it is very heartening to know that there are some of you that still have standards and principles. And lets be fair, it is not only your trade where standards have declined. Perhaps journalism is a mirror (or a barometer) of society in general.
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If I was to order a loco in Australia today, I would not see it before the end of 2012 at the earliest. That pretty much sums up the reason why companies are looking overseas for new locos.

There are only 2 companies in Australia where you can get a loco from and as far as Standard Gauge goes there are only 2 factories in all of Australia.
You won't get me I'm part of the Union, you won't get me I'm part of the Union, till the day I die, till the day I die.<br /><br />The Strawbs. 1973 Bursting at the Seams:<br />Part of the Union.

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