New state subsidies to focus on replacing diesel trains
Both passenger and freight carriers should benefit from the subsidies; the program will focus on alternative power.
After several years, the Ministry of Transport and the Ministry of the Environment are planning to offer subsidies for the purchase of new railway vehicles again. The subsidies will come from the Modernization Fund, which is filled with revenues from the sale of emission allowances. The introduction of the programme was announced by the Ministry of Transport.
The entire railway sector had hoped that subsidies for the purchase of new vehicles would come from the EU Recovery and Resilience Facility last year. However, the previous government eventually removed rail support from the program altogether. So far, the last trains were purchased with the assistance of EU transport subsidies.
Both passenger and freight carriers are to benefit from subsidies from the Modernization Fund. There will be two programs; the TRANSGov programme will finance vehicles intended for passenger transport, where the condition will be exclusive operation under a public service obligation. In the TRANSCom programme, support will be provided to vehicles of commercial carriers mainly in freight transport.
Priority will be given to vehicles with alternative propulsion systems, or with electric propulsion, if they immediately replace older diesel-powered machines. In particular, this could be used to purchase trains for diesel fast trains from a set known as Big Diesel.
The calls are planned to be launched as soon as the European Commission approves the public aid notification, which is required mainly for aid to commercial carriers.
Edited and translated by Lucie Trávníčková.