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TSSA Seeks Reassurances on Future of Arriva

15 January 2019

TSSA is seeking reassurances about the future of UK rail franchises run by Arriva after reports German state operator - Deutsche Bhan (DB) - may be set to sell the Arriva business.

DB is set to hold an urgent meeting with the German Transport Minister today (Tuesday 15th Jan).

The German company has been struggling with domestic passenger rail figures of late and there have been reports of a funding gap in the region of four billion euros.

Arriva is responsible for running Northern which was at the centre of timetable chaos last Spring, among others.

TSSA General Secretary, Manuel Cortes said: “We really must have reassurances now from DB about their intentions regarding Arriva.

“What will concern rail passengers is the spectre of yet more failing franchises as a result of so-called business decisions taken by a private company.

“British commuters should not suffer any loss of services because of financial issues at DB. This uncertainty just goes to show that only placing our railways back in public hands will bring long-lasting stability.

“What this also shows is that Brexit is already having a strong negative effect – with lower than expected growth in rail passenger numbers and likely a subsequent hit to profits.”

DB bought Arriva in 2010 and acquired three national rail franchises – Arriva Trains Wales, Chiltern Railways and CrossCountry – as well as Tyne & Wear Metro, open access operator Wrexham and Shropshire, a chain of bus companies in Britain and numerous bus and rail operations in other European countries.

Arriva also won the London Overground concession in 2007 in partnership with MTR.

More recently, Arriva signed the next Overground concession as sole operator in 2016 but decided to withdraw from the competition for the next Welsh franchise in October 2017. 

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