State Aid

GERMANY: Invest in the Infrastructure, not in a Company! The Planned Equity Increase for DB Risks Delaying Urgent Upgrades to the Network

Last week, the media reported about plans by the German government to increase the equity capital of the state-owned rail incumbent Deutsche Bahn (DB).

Not only would this distort competition - because equity injections into the DB Group parent company mean that its commercial subsidiaries can also benefit from support intended for its infrastructure subsidiary, but also, it comes at a time when the EU Commission’s competition authority is already investigating both DB and French incumbent SNCF for cross-subsidisation of their commercial freight operator subsidiaries.

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Wettbewerber kritisieren Staatsbahn-Expansionen

Der europäische Perso- nenverkehr-Wettbewerberverband Allrail sieht die Verlängerung der Nachtzuglinie Stockholm – Hamburg der schwedischen SJ bis Berlin skeptisch.

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SJ använder svenska skattepengar till orättvis konkurrens mot Snälltåget

Trafikverket bör ta ansvar för den av SJ nyligen aviserade offensiven mot det privatägda järnvägsföretaget Snälltåget. Det svenska statliga järnvägsföretaget SJ, har nämligen meddelat att man kommer att kopiera Snälltågets nattåg mellan Stockholm – Berlin, genom att förlänga sin, av svenska skattebetalare subventionerade nattågstrafik Stockholm – Hamburg till Berlin. Detta utgör en olaglig korssubventionering.

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Trafikverket to blame for state-owned SJ using Swedish PSO subsidy for unfair competition in EU night train market

The Swedish Transport Authority Trafikverket should take responsibility for the recently announced offensive against the privately owned operator Snälltåget by the Swedish state-owned rail incumbent SJ. Namely, SJ has announced that it will compete with Snälltåget´s commercially driven night train between Stockholm and Berlin by extending its taxpayer-funded Stockholm – Hamburg night train service to Berlin. This represents an illegal cross-subsidy.

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Pris & Brussels,

Landmark judgement in CORSICA: €86m fine because Public Service Obligation not justified – relevant to passenger rail

The Corsica Island authority has been fined €86 million due to an unjustified Public Service Obligation (‘PSO’) subsidy for the state ferry operator SNCM compared to a privately owned competitor1.

This case is 100% relevant to EU passenger rail. Some EU countries are being lobbied hard by their state rail incumbents to directly award PSO contracts. There is high risk that – like in Corsica – such PSOs will be an unjustified & wasteful use of subsidy - with no benefit for passengers or the environment.

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