Events > DBT Trade Mission to SARA 2023

Expression of Interest:
DBT Trade Mission to
SARA 2023


Johannesburg, South Africa: 25 - 27 October 2023

row-start col-md-7 #top-section top-section #about-section no-pad-bottom-section

DBT are delighted to announce our trade mission to SARA 2023, the Southern African Railways conference and exhibition.

This mission is ideal for UK rail businesses in the areas of advanced control; energy management; high value rolling stock systems; whole life asset optimisation and through life management; and customer experience.


Why South Africa?

Through an initial profiling and analysis, the department has identified an £11bn possible project pipeline (Source: Africa House).

This project pipeline represents an excellent opportunity for the UK rail industry to understand the export opportunities across Southern Africa and to meet with DBT staff from across the region who can support their export goals.


About SARA:

Taking place annually, the Southern African Railway (SARA) conference and exhibition, is hosted by railway operators and attended by ministries, regulators, and financiers from the region. The conference and exhibition attract over 800+ delegates from across southern Africa and globally, and has over 40 speakers, with 30 topics and 15 sessions.

Rail Forum are currently in discussion with the Southern African Railways Association to establish a framework for collaboration.


Conference Program:

The theme for the Southern African Railways Conference in 2023 will be: 'Enhancing Railway Capacity and Quality Of Services Through New Operating Models and Partnerships For Seamless Regional Integration and Trade.'

To view details of some session highlights, please see here.


Pre market visit activities to include:

  • Educational webinar on exporting to Southern Africa, including: Brief project analysis and rail operators’ profiles, an overview on previous and potential opportunities in the rail industry, information on market requirements when exporting to region and how to prepare for your visit.


In market activities* to include:

  • Attend SARA and meet with buyers and gain valuable market insights
  • Network with DBT UK and overseas colleagues and meet with peers from across the UK
  • Participate in site visits to future line expansions, and workshops around Gauteng


*Activities subject to change.


Who should attend?

The conference and exhibition are suitable for both seasoned exporters as well as new exporters i.e. those looking to meet with existing buyers to increase trade and those looking to gain valuable experience.



Cost: Free to join. Delegates are responsible for paying for their own travel expenses including flights, accommodation and in market costs.


row-end col-sm-12 col-md-5


  Trade Mission: The Southern African Railway conference and exhibition (SARA)  
  Date: 25 -27 October 2023  
  Location: Gallagher Convention Centre, Johannesburg, South Africa  

Contact DBT

  If you have any queries relating to international trade why not contact us.

We have local trade offices based around the UK, within each office you can contact an international trade advisor.
  Find your local office:  
  visit: great.gov.uk  
row-start col-xs-12 colour-section row-end

Express your interest

A full programme will be confirmed upon registering an expression of interest of the mission.

Places on this trade mission are limited. So, use the link below to view further information or to register your interest in joining us today, free and without obligation.




Please note: The final closing date for registering your interest is 29th September 2023, and your place is not guaranteed until you have completed an application form and it has been approved.

For any other export related enquiries contact the Department for Business and Trade in the Midlands at dbtmidlands@businessandtrade.gov.uk

Midlands Engine


Organised by:

The Department for International Trade

The Department for Business and Trade (DBT) is the Government Department that helps UK based companies succeed in the global economy. We also help overseas companies bring their high-quality investment to the UK’s dynamic economy, acknowledged as Europe’s best place in which to succeed in global business.