The Department of Trade and industry (TDI) has partnered with the German government in an effort to roll out hydrogen (H2)-powered buses in South Africa.
Chief Director of Primary Mineral Processing at the DTI, Mr Tapiwa Samanga, spoke at the Fuel Cell Bus Workshop that the DTI hosted in partnership with the German government in Cape Town on the 20th of February, about the South African governments commitment to supporting efforts of all stakeholders in opening the fuel cell market for the benefit of the country.
The purpose of the workshop, which was held under the theme Fuel Cell Bus – Unleashing Industrial Opportunities for South Africa through a Zero Emission Choice, was to provide a platform where South Africa can learn from the German experience with the successful roll-out of fuel cell buss pilots in various cities.
“Different stakeholders have various objectives when it comes to the development of the fuel cells industry. Government is the convergence point of these diverse objectives and our role is to optimise the benefits from this emerging sector for the whole country. As government we want to explore opportunities brought about by the Platinum Group Metals value-chain in order to create jobs, grow the economy and further stimulate the beneficiation of our mineral resources,” said Samanga.
“The Germans have already made good progress in rolling out fuel cell bus pilots in a number of cities. We will learn from the German experience. The fact that our countries have good bilateral relations will stand us in good stead; we can work together in developing the South African fuel cell bus industry. As government we are committed to supporting all the local players to participate in the fuel cell value-chain experience, especially our local technology developers,” Samanga continued.
Fuel cell buses present an opportunity for South Africa to play a role in reducing global greenhouse gas emissions and improving quality of life. Key stakeholders in the SA bus transportation including metros, mining companies, bus manufacturers, as well as other government departments are attending the workshop.