Rail industry responds to reduction in rail enhancements funding

4 December 2020


The Railway Industry Association (RIA), the trade body for the UK rail supply community, has responded to news that the rail enhancements budget has reduced by £1 billion.

Darren Caplan, Chief Executive of the Railway Industry Association, said: “Recent confirmation, following the Spending Review, that rail enhancements investment will reduce by more than £1 billion over the current five year funding period, is very disappointing. Rail enhancements are essential in ensuring our rail network is fit for the future, improving reliability, connectivity, customer experience and helping to reduce carbon emissions. Taking our foot off the pedal now on rail investment will not help for when passengers return following the Coronavirus pandemic.

“The rail industry still doesn’t have sight of what rail enhancement projects are coming up – we were told earlier this year that there are more than 80 projects in the Government’s Rail Network Enhancements Pipeline, yet with the news today that there is over £1 billion less in the funding pot, it is unclear what schemes will be going ahead and what will not be. In line with RIA’s Speed Up Rail Enhancements, SURE, campaign, we strongly urge the Government to publish this list of rail enhancement projects as soon as possible, to help rail businesses plan and invest, at what is such a critical time for the UK economy.”

Notes to Editors

  1. The reduction was confirmed by the Rail Minister in a response to a Parliamentary Question here
  2. About RIA: The Railway Industry Association (RIA) is the voice of the UK rail supply community. We help to grow a sustainable, high-performing, railway supply industry, and to export UK rail expertise and products. RIA has 300+ companies in membership in a sector that contributes £36 billion in economic growth and £11 billion in tax revenue each year, as well as employing 600,000 people—more than the workforce of Birmingham. It is also a vital industry for the UK’s economic recovery, supporting green investment and jobs in towns and communities across the UK. RIA’s membership is active across the whole of railway supply, covering a diverse range of products and services and including both multi-national companies and SMEs (60% by number). RIA works to promote the importance of the rail system to UK plc, to help export UK expertise around the globe and to share best practice and innovation across the industry. www.riagb.org.uk
     

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