Finland is reforming its railways with a new state-owned project company

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FINLAND: The Ministry of Transport and Communications is planning to establish a limited liability company Oy Suomen Rata Ab, wholly owned by the state, with a goal to comprehensively develop the railway sector and promote large-scale rail transport investments in Finland.

The Government's Cabinet Committee on Economic Policy has discussed the Ministry's proposal on 1 February 2019 and expressed its support.

Oy Suomen Rata Ab would be established with an initial capital injection of EUR 100 million working capital and will consist of five subsidiaries:

  • Project company Suomi-rata, or "Finland line", responsible for the development of the Airport line and Airport-Tampere rail corridor, with estimated total cost of around EUR 5.5 billion.
  • Project company Turun tunnin juna ("Fast Helsinki-Turku Line"), responsible for the development of the Helsinki-Turku connection, with estimated total cost of around EUR 2 billion.
  • Rolling stock company, which will oversee the partial demerger of VR Group Ltd, including the transfer of all Sm2 and Sm4 commuter trains to the new rolling stock company.
  • Real estate company will ensure competition-neutral conditions in the railway market by providing all railway operators with equal access to stations, terminals, depots and maintenance facilities as well as to services offered by these real estates. 
  • Rail Baltica company will manage Finland’s involvement in the Rail Baltica corridor linking Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland.

"It is clear that large-scale, necessary rail investments cannot be carried out from budgetary funds and that is why we need new finance methods. A solution has been sought throughout the government term. I am glad that it has now been reached in cooperation with the cities. Efficient rail transport services are essential for facilitating everyday mobility and extending the commuter areas. They are also a significant contributing factor for Finland's competitiveness," says Minister of Transport and Communications Anne Berner.