THE Czech Ministry of Transport announced on March 23 that Czech private operator RegioJet has won the tender to operate express services on line R9 from Prague via Havlíčkův Brod to Brno after submitting the most economical bid.

The 15-year contract will run from December 2026 and will account for 2.78 million train-km per year. RegioJet won the tender against the incumbent, state operator Czech Railways (ČD), with a bid worth Koruna 4.93bn ($US 223.6m), compared with ČD’s offer of Koruna 5.86bn.

Regiojet plans to order modern low-floor 200km/h trains from Pesa to operate the service and match the quality of service currently provided by ČD.

“I am glad that we managed to get such an important contract that will connect Prague with Brno,” says RegioJet owner, Mr Radim Jančura. “It is the next step in our expansion and we are looking forward to the next competitions. We will continue to strive to provide passengers with quality services at affordable prices in the future.”

RegioJet says it will provide new trains without the need for government or European funding, which emphasises the advantage of employing an the open tender and the benefit of competition in the rail market.