Ford starts exporting cars from South Africa to Europe

Front row, (l to r) Sindie Ndwalaza (Regional Corporate Affairs Manager Cape Channel, Transnet Port Terminals); Chad Jansen (Acting Business Manager PE Lohathla Manganese Business Cape Channel, Transnet Port Terminals); Rajesh Dana (Port Manager, Transnet National Ports Authority, Port of Port Elizabeth); Captain Alexander Elpedes (Delphinus Leader, NYK Line); Raymond Williams (Vehicle Logistics - Export Markets, Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa); Second row: Captain Faisal Sultan (Senior Operations Manager, TNPA, Port of Port Elizabeth); Sujit Baghattjee (New Business Development Manager, TNPA, Port of Port Elizabeth); Paul Brooks (MP&L Manager, Ford Struandale Engine Plant) - far right

Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa (FMCSA) is expanding its vehicle export operations by adopting a multi-port strategy with the first shipment of 1000 locally assembled Ford Rangers from Port Elizabeth to markets in Europe.

Currently, all of Ford’s incoming and outbound vehicles are processed through Durban Harbour’s “Roll On Roll Off” (RORO) Terminal, which is the country’s primary import and export hub for most original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), importers and distributors.

“We are experiencing unprecedented demand for the Ford Ranger around the world, and have invested over R3-billion in the recent expansion of our production capacity in our South African operations to fulfil these orders,” said Ockert Berry, VP Operations, Ford Middle East and Africa.

The Ford Rangers, which are produced at Ford’s Silverton Assembly Plant in Pretoria, are being transported to Port Elizabeth using Transnet Freight Rail infrastructure. Traditionally, Port Elizabeth-based vehicle manufacturers transport units to Gauteng by rail, and these rail assets return empty. Ford will now be using the return leg to move export vehicles from Silverton to Port Elizabeth for shipping to selected markets around the world.

Rajesh Dana, Port Manager, Port of Port Elizabeth said: “The Transnet National Ports Authority is extremely excited at the launch vehicle volumes that Ford Motor Company will be processing through our port. The high number of these launch volumes further provides the Transnet operating divisions the opportunity to ensure that our OEM partners experience world-class facilitation through our port. Of further importance is the role that this operation will play in the long-term strategy of the port becoming an Automotive Hub.”

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