Maria Eagle MP, Labour’s Shadow Transport Secretary, responding to comments by Rail Minister Simon Burns today, said:
“The fact that Ministers are resorting to misinformation and spin demonstrates the weakness of the case for proceeding with a costly and unnecessary privatisation of InterCity East Coast. Investment in our rail network overwhelmingly comes from the public, not the train operators, and that includes the planned upgrade and new trains on the East Coast.
“Ministers should read the report of the Rail Regulator’s that reveals how train companies now pay less to the taxpayer than they receive in subsidies, even without including the £3.9 billion investment in infrastructure delivered through Network Rail. The Government should start being honest about who pays for our railways, abandon this misguided privatisation and focus on dealing with the ongoing problems as a result of their failed franchising programme.”