Image: Infrabel.be

Belgian railways receive additional 250 million support

The Belgian coalition government reached a budget agreement last week. Railways receive 250 million extra in the next three years.  Most of this will be invested in infrastructure, to further develop rail freight transport. 

The budget agreement provides for 26 investment projects, including the Belgian railways, which will receive almost 250 million euros. These amounts are to be added to the 365 million euros provided in the context of the European recovery plan, making a total of 615 million euros. This amount does not take into account the significant Covid compensation, due to a drastic fall in sales of national operator NMBS/SNCB, while supply remained almost at its maximum.

Priority to infrastructure

The details of the distribution of this amount within the two Belgian railway companies, SNCB and Infrabel, have not yet been finalised. But it can already be said that the infrastructure seems to be rather well rewarded.

181 million euros will be used to develop freight transport, by investments in infrastructure, such as connections to some factories or measures taken to lengthen some yard tracks to accept 750 metre-long trains. The port areas are also set to benefit from major infrastructure improvements, for example in the North Sea Port area and in the Zeebrugge area.

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Author: Frederic de Kemmeter

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