Archive for March 30th, 2009

7,000 km Polish network face axe

Monday, 30 March 2009


Comparative investment in railway infrastructure.

PKP will have to close 7,000 km of its current 19,000 km Polish railway network warns Zbigniew Szafranski, the chairman of the Polish State Railways infrastructure company.

With no prospect of extra funding for essential maintenance the most degraded sections of track should be eliminated according to Szafranski. He notes that only 3,000 km of route is profitable and earns enough to keep another 7,000 km in operation. He claims that the remaining 9,000 km generate a serious loss. Szafranski blames falling revenues from PKP Cargo for PKP PLK’s dire financial situation. The dire situation within PKP PLK has already led to planned investments being cut back including those that were to be co-financed from EU funds.

PKP SA, the Polish State Railways group holding company, announced a 370 mln zloty loss in 2008. The group isĀ  saddled with interest charges on an accumulated debt of 5,7 billion zl. Andrzej Wach, the chairman of the group has requested the Polish Parliamentary Infrstructure Committee to support his bid for an injection of 4.5 billion of new government funding. It appears that the government is only considering making 300 million zl available. The monies would be provided to PKP Cargo to pay for reduncancy payments for the thousands of staff that are being laid off.

Meanwhile the Polish press has run a story that, in spite of its poor financial results, PKP has paid its Directors and senior staff a performance bonus of 1 million zl.