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Trainmaker INKA choo choos into African market

State-owned train maker PT Industri Kereta Api (INKA) has won a deal worth Rp 1.3 trillion (US$90 million) to supply locomotives to Zambia, marking its first foray into the largely untapped African market.

INKA is looking at the possibility of exporting to other African countries, including Nigeria, Sudan, Mozambique and Egypt. It already sells to Bangladesh, the Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore and Australia, among others.

“The Nigerian transportation ministry has already visited to check out our trains,” vice president Bambang Kushendarto said Monday as reported by Antara.

The Zambian deal for 30 electro-diesel locomotives will be funded by Swedish soft loans, and delivery of the locomotives will be in 22 months, while the train signals and other facilities within four years.

INKA’s past exports have included supplying 50 broad gauge locomotives and 200 meter-gauge locomotives to Bangladesh, ballast hopper locomotive cars for Thailand and chassis locomotives to Australia.

INKA, which runs a factory in Madiun, East Java, will also sign an agreement to produce hydraulic diesel locomotives for the Philippines this month.

The company also supplies rolling stocks for the Indonesian market, including the cars for the light rapid transit (LRT) system under construction in Jakarta and several other cities.

President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has called on Indonesian producers to explore new markets to reduce their dependence on traditional markets such as Asia and Europe. (sha/bbn)