The government of Queensland has begun consultation on the creation of a transit authority to co-ordinate rail, bus and ferry services in the southeast of the Australian state by July 2008. QR's passenger services would be structurally separated from freight operations.
A feasibility study is being conducted into a proposed 700 km extension of Namibia's Grootfontein branch to Katima Mulilo on the Zambian border. Business Development Executive for the Walvis Bay Corridor Johnny Smith said it will target the copper mines in Zambia, though about 200 km of new construction would be needed to access the main line to the Copperbelt.
Kansas City Southern it is to apply to the US and Mexican governments next year for permits to construct a bridge across the Rio Grande southeast of Laredo, on the proposed Texas Department of Transportation East Loop Bypass Corridor. TranSystems will undertake engineering studies for the bridge, which would remove freight from the city centre and offer the possibility of using the existing route for cross-border commuter services.
Amongst the bidders for the project to upgrade the Buenos Aires - Mendoza route for 160 km/h passenger services (RG 10.07 p595), representatives from Alstom, CAF, Corporación América and Ferromel were onboard an inspection train which ran to Palmira via ALL metals on November 8. The successful bidder is now expected to be announced on January 24 2008.
India's Eastern Railway has begun conversion from metre to broad gauge of the line from Katihar to Jogbani, railhead for eastern Nepal. The first 1 676 mm gauge train is expected to run through to Kolkata in March, lowering transport costs for Nepalese export traffic.
In October the presidents of Angola and Namibia confirmed their intention to extend Namibia's northern line which is currently under construction to Oshikango by 250 km to reach Casinga in Angola, southern terminus of a branch from Dongo which is being rehabilitated.