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Norway / Newly elected government to reduce competition in rail transport 

The newly elected Norwegian government has presented a programme to strengthen rail transport in the country which includes the termination of competition, splitting up and privatising the railway, and stopping the ongoing tendering of railway lines in Norway. A part of the programme will be capacity increases for both passenger and rail freight transport, and a review of the current organisation of the railway sector to achieve a simpler organisation and a clearer division of responsibilities between the transport ministry, the railway directorate and infrastructure manager Bane NOR.
Source: Bane NOR press release 14.10.2021

Belgium / Government to invest EUR 2 million per year in night services

Georges Gilkinet, the Belgian Minister of Mobility, has announced EUR 2 million per year from the federal government for the development of night train services. In a survey conducted by the Federal Public Service (FPS) for Mobility in August 2021, 62% of Belgians had indicated interest in this mode of transport. Currently, the service in Belgium is limited to the Brussels - Vienna line, which is served by the Nightjet trains of Austrian state railway (ÖBB) (((50/2020-88282))). According to the Minister of Transport, the funds are intended to encourage new night transport providers by providing direct support.
Source: Belgian Mobility Ministry press release 14.10.2021

Poland / PKP Intercity tenders leasing of 5 diesel locomotives

Polish long-distance transport operator PKP Intercity has published a tender for the leasing of five diesel locomotives. Bids can be submitted until 5th November 2021, with the vehicles scheduled to be delivered by 30th December 2021. The leasing term is to be three years with an option for an extension for another year. 
Source: Rynek Kolejowy 20.10.2021

Spain / Hitachi Rail to maintain ETR 1000 HSTs for Ilsa

Spanish private high-speed rail (HSR) operator Ilsa has awarded Hitachi Rail España a contract worth EUR 737 million for the maintenance of its new fleet of 20 high-speed trains (HST) of the ETR 1000 series. The 30-year contract covers the maintenance of the vehicles until 2052. The measures will be realised at a site in Madrid. Ilsa will begin its operations in the second half of 2022 (H2/2022), connecting Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia, Alicante, Seville, Málaga and Córdoba (((05/2021-90553))). The operator recently received the first of the new HSTs (((36/2021-100293))).
Source: Hitachi press release 21.10.2021

France / Alstom to sell Aptis electric bus subsidiary 

French railway technology supplier Alstom is planning to sell Aptis, its subsidiary for electric buses, by the end of 2021. If this is not successful, operations are to be discontinued. According to Alstom, Aptis has not benefited from the significant growth of the electric bus market in France and Europe. Aptis has so far received orders for 87 buses, of which 62 have yet to be delivered.
Source: Rail Business 21.10.2021

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