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Ministry of Transport and Communications and VR agree on long-distance rail traffic operation

Ministry of Transport and Communications and VR agree on long-distance rail traffic operation

Press release 04.07.2013 13.13 fi sv en

The Ministry of Transport and Communications and VR Group Oy have agreed that VR Group Oy will continue to operate long-distance rail passenger traffic on exclusive rights until the end of 2024.

An agreement on exclusive rights to operate long-distance rail passenger traffic in the period 3 December 2009-31 December 2019 is in place between the Ministry of Transport and Communications and VR Group Oy. This agreement contains an option under which the contracting parties may, by the end of 2015, make a joint decision to extend the agreement by five years, if the operator intends to make significant investments in rolling stock during the agreement period.

Opening long-distance traffic to competition at the end of 2019 and waiving the option contained in the current agreement would not be justified, as the rules applicable to the opening of the competition have not been finalised at the EU level. Additionally, the current rail network would not support effective competition.

In return for the exclusive rights, VR Group Oy undertakes to make investments in rolling stock. The Ministry of Transport and Communications may also impose an annual obligation to operate on VR Group Oy, which will at maximum be EUR 20 million by the end of 2019 and EUR 21 million by the end of 2024.

Further information:
Mr Tero Jokilehto, Director of Unit, tel. +358 40 535 0574