New Transnet Chief Executive Officer Portia Derby says she is optimistic that the fortunes of the rail, port and pipeline company can be turned around.

Transnet is among the state companies that have come under scrutiny at the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture in Parktown, Johannesburg, after losses of close to R1 billion in locomotive tenders.

Derby was speaking to the SABC on the sidelines of the African Mining Indaba in Cape Town.

She says she would not have taken up the job, if she did not believe there were chances of turning around Transnet to make it an enabler of economic growth.

“Not only am I optimistic about the fact that we can be able to be a genuine enabler of growth for the SA economy,  I also think that our linkages into the continent are absolutely essential, for me if South African businesses, we don’t start having a real clear sense that if we don’t develop partnerships with the continent, we will lose out. It’s a real opportunity that we must look at.”