Clarity on rail franchising will come as relief for businesses

27th March 2013

Commenting on the Department for Transport's decision to re-start the rail franchising process after last year's failed West Coast procurement process, Dr Adam Marshall, Director of Policy at the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), said:   -Businesses up and down the country will be relieved to see an end to the protracted uncertainty that has faced the railways since the West Coast tender process was halted last autumn.

  -Companies in many cities and towns will also be pleased that the Department for Transport has privileged stability and clarity on the running of the West Coast mainline, until all remaining questions about the franchising system are resolved.   -However, businesses in many parts of the country remain concerned about the huge number of franchises that are due to be put out to tender between now and 2015. Since many businesses depend on rail services, whether for workforce planning or for major investment decisions, it is vital for the government to do everything in its power avoid further delays and uncertainty.

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