EU Funds Totalling 1 Billion Kuna Allow Croatia to Purchase New Trains

Lauren Simmonds

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Josip Bohutinski/VL writes on the 1st of January, 2020, with the help of EU funds, HZ Passenger transport will receive just over 1 billion kuna this year for the purchase of 21 brand new electric motor trains.

Out of the cohesion fund, HZ Passenger transport will receive 880.3 million kuna, ie 85 percent of the eligible costs, while the remaining 15 percent will come directly from the state budget. After signing the contract for the award of these grants of 1.03 billion kuna, HZ PP will launch an international public tender for the actual procurement of the new trains.

The Ministry of Maritime Affairs, Transport and Infrastructure says that thanks to EU funds, HZ PP will thus modernise its electric vehicle fleet with eleven suburban and ten regional trains, which will provide passengers with much more comfort, reduce their travel time, provide greater capacity and more reliable transportation, therefore improving the competitiveness of services provided by the trains overall.

They also state that the project which has been financially facilitated by the use of EU funds is a continuation of the work of addressing the advanced age of the fleet of trains. HZ PP has so far acquired 27 brand new trains, in accordance with the contract it signed back in 2014 with Končar – Electric Vehicles on the procurement of 44 new trains, worth a massive 1.6 billion kuna in total.

However, back then, only half of the amount was secured with HBOR’s credit, so that in the first phase of the procurement, twenty electric motor trains were delivered for the suburban and regional lines and one diesel-electric train was procured for regional transport.

In the meantime, HZ PP secured 130.5 million kuna for the purchase of an additional four diesel-electric motor trains for regional transport without VAT with money from a World Bank loan.

Three have already been put out on the market, meaning that currently 27 new trains are currently running on Croatian railways. From the loan of the World Bank and Eurofima, HZ PP plans to realise a contract with Končar by the year 2022, which will result in the delivery of nineteen more new trains (seven diesel-electric and twelve electric motors), arriving from 2021 to 2024.

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