Israel Railways, the state owned railway company, announced last week that it obtained permission from the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Transport to procure cargo rolling stock for NIS 130 million.
In a press release the company said it will buy 12 locomotives and 162 used flatcars, which will increase its locomotive fleet by 30% and boost its cargo capacity to 300 containers a day.
The company's objective is to double cargo capacity within five years, from seven million tons a year to 13.5 million tons, and to triple the company's market share of cargo haulage from 8% to 25% by the end of the decade.
Israel Railways CEO Boaz Zafrir noted that "Israel Railways currently has only 4-5% of the national cargo haulage market, and 8% of the local container haulage market,". Zafrir added "I believe that with the right investment in this sector, we can triple our activity within a few years, thereby greatly boosting the company revenue, while simultaneously taking thousands of trucks off the roads, which will reduce traffic accidents and air pollution."
During 2013, Israel Railways plans to increase its revenue from cargo by 15% from NIS 130 million to NIS 150 million.