August 21, 2012

CD approves revised Railjet order

Written by  Quintus Vosman
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CD approves revised Railjet order Quintus Vosman

AFTER a lengthy and complex decision process, Czech Railways (CD) has finally announced it will go ahead with a reduced order for seven 230km/h Railjet trains from Siemens.

At the end of September 2011 CD concluded an agreement with Siemens for the delivery of 16 Railjet sets, taking over an option for additional trains from Austrian Federal Railways (ÖBB). The contract award procedure was reviewed and approved by the Czech Office for the Protection of Economic Competition, which concluded that procedure was valid because the purchase represented an extraordinary business opportunity for CD.

In January CD decided to partially amend the original agreement in order to accommodate the requirements of foreign operating partners CD was negotiating with over future deployment of the trains. The agreement was amended so that 15 Railjet units with increased seating capacity would be delivered to CD in a modified configuration. Siemens would provide seven seven-car and eight eight-car sets (a total of 113 vehicles) with increased seating capacity instead of 112 coaches proposed in the original agreement.

CD says partial modification of the contract agreement was undertaken transparently (having been published, inter alia, in the Official Journal of the European Union), and in accordance with the applicable public procurement laws, for the price of €15.8 million. The changes have not been contested by the Czech Office for the Protection of Economic Competition or anyone else.

The trains which will be very similar to those already in use with ÖBB, will be delivered in 2014, and will enter service on the  Prague – Brno – Vienna – Graz route in December 2014. CD has an option for the remaining eight trains, and it says the decision whether or not to order these trains will depend on future business needs. A decision on whether to order the remaining trains will be taken in the middle of next year.

Traction has yet to be finalised, although it is likely that CD will lease Siemens Taurus locomotives similar to those used by ÖBB on its Railjet trains.

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