Categories: Economy
| On
2024-01-23 9:13 AM

Growth in Land Transport Sector Signals Positive Economic Trends in South Africa

  • Payload volume increased by 1.6%, and income grew by 3.3% in November 2023.
  • Primary mining and quarrying products led with a 10.9% boost, contributing 3.5 percentage points.
  • Road freight rose by 2.7%, contributing 2.3 percentage points, while rail freight spiked by 12.3%.
By Lethabo Ntsoane

In a recent land transport survey for November 2023, the South African land transport sector showcased promising signs of growth in both freight and passenger transportation. The comprehensive data provides insights into key metrics, highlighting the resilience and expansion of the country’s transportation networks.

Freight Transportation on the Rise

The survey revealed a notable 1.6% increase in the volume of goods transported (payload) in November 2023 compared to the same period in 2022. This growth was accompanied by a 3.3% rise in income from freight transportation, underlining the sector’s economic significance.

Income Growth Over Three Months:

A broader perspective over the three months ending November 2023 depicted a robust 4.6% increase in income from freight transportation compared to the corresponding period in 2022. Primary mining and quarrying products played a pivotal role in this surge, witnessing a substantial 10.9% increase, contributing 3.5 percentage points to the overall growth. Additionally, ‘other’ freight experienced a remarkable uptick of 16.0%, contributing 3.2 percentage points to the positive momentum.

Mode of Transportation Breakdown:

Mode of TransportationPercentage IncreaseContribution to Growth
Road Freight2.7%2.3 percentage points
Rail Freight12.3%1.9 percentage points

Seasonally adjusted payload, a crucial indicator, saw a substantial 4.2% increase in the three months ending November 2023 compared to the previous quarter. This growth was driven by a 2.7% increase in road freight (contributing 2.3 percentage points) and an impressive 12.3% surge in rail freight (contributing 1.9 percentage points).

Passenger Transportation Flourishes

The passenger transportation sector mirrored the positive trajectory seen in freight, with a noteworthy 14.6% increase in the number of passenger journeys in November 2023 compared to the same month in 2022. This surge was complemented by a 10.3% rise in income from passenger transportation.

Three-Month Analysis:

Examining a broader period, the data for the three months ending November 2023 indicated a 6.1% increase in seasonally adjusted passenger journeys compared to the previous three months. Road passenger journeys grew by 5.5%, contributing 4.8 percentage points to the overall increase, while rail passenger journeys increased by 10.2%, contributing 1.4 percentage points.

Implications for the South African Economy

The positive trends observed in both freight and passenger transportation sectors are indicative of a resilient and expanding economy. The growth in primary mining and quarrying products, as well as ‘other’ freight, underscores the diversity and strength of South Africa’s industrial base. The surge in passenger journeys further suggests increased economic activity and mobility, aligning with broader economic recovery trends.


The land transport survey for November 2023 paints a promising picture for South Africa, with growth in both freight and passenger transportation sectors. The positive trajectory, driven by various contributing factors, signifies a robust and resilient economy, setting the stage for continued development and prosperity in the coming months.

Join Our Newsletter
Subscribe to our newsletter and stay updated.


Start trading with a free $30 bonus

Unleash your trading potential with XM—your gateway to the electric world of financial markets! Get a staggering $30 trading bonus right off the bat, with no deposit required. Dive into a sea of opportunities with access to over 1000 instruments on the most cutting-edge XM platforms. Trade with zest, at your own pace, anytime, anywhere. Don't wait, your trading journey begins now! Click here to ignite your trading spirit!

Lethabo Ntsoane

Lethabo Ntsoane holds a Bachelors Degree in Accounting from the University of South Africa. He is a Financial Product commentator at Rateweb. He is an expect financial product analyst with years of experience in reviewing products and offering commentary. Lethabo majors in financial news, reviews and financial tips. He can be contacted: Email: Twitter: @NtsoaneLethabo