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29 May, 2009 08:23

Russian railways looks to boost competition in rail transport

Russian Railways has lost its monopoly on Russian cargo shipments. The company’s market share has fallen to 49% in the first quarter of the year.

At the international railway-business forum the President of Russian Railways, Vladimir Yakunin, said private operators’ tariff policies are more flexible.

Russian Railways says it plans to completely spin off its freight services in separate companies, bringing them out of the state regulation.

“We are trying to be competitive, trying to be a market oriented company, we are in a position where the state deprived us, to be a competitive company in order to give the possibility to other participants of the market, you know, to be more attractive. So I suppose it will change and then we will be balanced on the competition with these private operators. We will not be the operators of the rolling stock. Our daughter companies will compete with these private owners on the same level, but we will be, as you know, the cradle, of the whole system of RZhD (Russian railways). We will be responsible only for the infrastructure tariff – technology, standards, security, and operation of the traffic.”