German parliament approves 11 billion-euro fund Deutsche Bahn
The traffic committee of the German Bundestag has agreed with the 86.2 billion euro-investment in the national rail network over the next ten years. 62 billion euros will be provided by the government. The remainder, 24.2 billion euros, will be raised by Deutsche Bahn (DB).
This was announced by the news service of the Bundestag, Heute im Bundestag. The state’s contribution over the next ten years is, however, controversial. This is especially true for the eleven billion euros in extra contributions to DB until 2030. Private rail operators that compete with the state-owned railway company have objected with this allocation.
Disguised state aid
Fear is that part of this money will not be spent on rail infrastructure, but will go to other, commercial, DB activities. For example, the financial support could be used to strengthen DB Cargo, which is facing financial issues. In this case the support is considered as disguised state aid, according to the organisations of private rail providers NO and Mofair.
Nevertheless, the traffic committee agrees with the plans of the state and has approved the funding plan for the next ten years. It is the third version of this performance and financing agreement between the state and state-owned company DB, a plan that is now being concluded for a longer term.