The Commission approves funding to modernise Czech railway rolling stock
Brussles, Belgium – The Commission approved an aid programme for the acquisition and modernisation of rolling stock in the Czech Republic. The Czech Government is set to spend CZK 4 800 million (EUR 173 million) under this programme between 2008 and 2013.
In the Czech Republic, as in most of the new Member States, the average age of passenger rolling stock is too high. Under the programme, aid will be granted to modernise railway transport within the framework of public service contracts. This will boost the modernisation of the Czech Republic’s rolling stock and make public rail transport more attractive than private transport, which often generates more pollution.
On the basis of the criteria laid down by the relevant legislation, the Commission has verified that this scheme will provide the appropriate funding for the necessary modernisation of railway rolling stock in the Czech Republic and will not unduly distort competition to the detriment of those operators not receiving aid. This decision is part of a wider Commission initiative to promote the modernisation of railway rolling stock in the European Union. Under the Community guidelines on State aid for railway undertakings, the Commission is currently opening up new funding opportunities for wagons and locomotives (see IP/08/674).
 Council Regulation (EEC) No 1191/69 of 26 June 1969 (OJ L 156, 28.6.1969, p. 1) as amended by Council Regulation (EEC) No 1893/91 of 20 June 1991 (OJ L 169, 29.6.1991, p. 1).