Government approves funding for draft procurement of new electric trains
On Tuesday 16 July, the government approved the funding for the supply of electric passenger trains and equipment for their maintenance, as well as for training of personnel. The government also assessed the impact of this procurement on the general state budget. The funding will be provided also for the development of a train repair centre.
It is planned to allocate the funding that does not exceed EUR 255 888 753 to JSC Pasažieru vilciens from 2019 -2024, and it is by EUR 3 million less compared to the funding approved at the meeting of the Cabinet of Ministers of 5 November 2018. The funding will be used to purchase 32 new electric trains, a spare parts fund for five years and electric train maintenance equipment, as well as for personnel training, by concluding a contract with ŠKODA VAGONKA A.S.
Accordingly, the financial means are provided for the conclusion of an agreement with ŠKODA VAGONKA A.S. It is expected that the agreement will be concluded by the end of July 2019.
The chosen model for financing new trains is the cheapest alternative available to the State. It will not impose additional costs from the attraction of funding or interest payments to commercial banks. According to the updated draft business plan, this model will ensure that Pasažieru vilciens will no longer need to offset losses from the state budget starting from 2025.
In addition, the Cabinet of Ministers has commissioned the Ministry of Transport to take the necessary measures to provide co-financing of the European Union funds, thereby reducing the impact on the general state budget.
The Guidelines for Transport Development for 2014-2020 provide for the integration of all forms of public transport into a single route system. When planning both urban transport and regional intercity route networks, in areas with high passenger traffic, priority is given to track routes by redeploying passengers from road transport to trains. In the long term, the train should become the backbone of the public transport network. It is also embedded in the future concept of the public transport of the Ministry of Transport for 2021-2030.
High-quality and accessible public transport is a service, which the state must provide to its citizens, just like the state provides everyone with opportunities for education, security or medical treatment.