Regulator sanctions extra Railtrack cash

Click to follow

The Rail Regulator Tom Winsor will today authorise billions of pounds in extra revenue for Railtrack over the next five years but will demand to know exactly how the money will be spent. In the first review of access charges since the industry was privatised, Mr Winsor will insist that Railtrack produces a fresh Network Management Statement (NMS), the first version of which was published earlier this year.

The Rail Regulator Tom Winsor will today authorise billions of pounds in extra revenue for Railtrack over the next five years but will demand to know exactly how the money will be spent. In the first review of access charges since the industry was privatised, Mr Winsor will insist that Railtrack produces a fresh Network Management Statement (NMS), the first version of which was published earlier this year.

The Regulator will expect that the "supplement" to the NMS will contain details of projects Railtrack would guarantee to undertake in return for a bigger income from train operating companies.

The new demand on Railtrack betrays Mr Winsor's frustration with the lack of detail contained in Railtrack's first document. The new statement of intent would also put flesh on the bones of the £60bn earmarked for rail in the Government's 10-year strategy for transport. Mr Winsor will insist that Railtrack spends the extra access charges on signalling and track projects aimed at delivering a better service to the public, which it will be expected to specify in detail.

Mr Winsor said he was going to demand "efficiency" as part of the review of charges, the details of which would be revealed to the stock exchange this morning. He said in this case efficiency did not mean less money. "There will be a lot more money but it has to be spent wisely," he said.

Comments