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Signing of the new service and financing agreement

Source: BMVI

Planning certainty for ten years • clients will benefit • basis for active climate change mitigation in the transport sector

Basis for a #strongrail in Germany: over the period to 2030, the record sum of 86 billion euros will be invested in the maintenance and modernization of the existing rail network. This sum will be used to renew tracks and stations, signal boxes and energy supply installations.

Today, Andreas Scheuer (Federal Minister of Transport), Richard Lutz (Chairman of DB AG) and Ronald Pofalla (Member of the DB Management Board responsible for Infrastructure) signed the new Service Level and Funding Agreement III in the presence of Olaf Scholz (Federal Minister of Finance).

The Federal Government will contribute 62 billion euros of the total amount of funding. DB will provide 24 billion euros from its own resources. This means that an average of 8.6 billion euros per year will be available for investment in replacement infrastructure and maintenance. That is 54 percent more than in the preceding planning period.

Federal Minister of Transport Andreas Scheuer:

There will be a “wow” effect. The 2020s will be a golden era for the railways. We will sign the largest ever modernization programme in Germany. Our goal is a strong rail system – a high-performance and high-quality network as a basis for active climate change mitigation in the transport sector. We will replace overaged facilities, ensure accessibility, improve the construction site management and the condition of the railway bridges – for the optimum benefit of the passengers.

Federal Minister of Finance Olaf Scholz:

Investment is the top priority of this Federal Government. We are investing record sums to make our country fit for the future. We aim to achieve this for Deutsche Bahn, too. The largest ever investment programme in the history of Deutsche Bahn will create a long-term and reliable investment prospect for modern and climate-friendly mobility by rail.

Richard Lutz, Chairman of DB AG:

We are well prepared to begin the decade of the railways. Infrastructure is not only the basis for growth and modal shift but also for good operating quality and high punctuality levels. The new Service Level and Funding Agreement will enable us to address the investment backlog and to thoroughly modernize the infrastructure. This will make the rail network more robust and reliable and enhance the attractiveness of railway stations.

Robert Pofalla, Member of the DB Management Board responsible for infrastructure:

We will make the railways really strong. The new Service Level and Funding Agreement is the foundation for better quality and stability in rail transport. It is the start of a modernization drive in the German rail network with a scope never seen before. We are cooperating closely with the construction industry. Together, we will now be able to plan over a much longer period, thereby securing capacities. This is a huge advantage. The additional funds will also enable us to use capacity-efficient construction processes to reduce the impact of the construction works on train operations and our customers.

The Service Level and Funding Agreement III

The Service Level and Funding Agreement regulates in particular the investment in replacement infrastructure for the existing rail network and defines quality indicators and penalties to be imposed in the event of non-compliance. The new Agreement will run for ten years; this means that the duration doubled in comparison with the Service Level and Funding Agreement II.

The Federal Government and DB will significantly increase their contributions. DB’s infrastructure companies will also increase their funding for investment and maintenance by 44 percent to a total of around 24 billion euros. In addition, the dividend payments of DB’s infrastructure companies will be fully reinvested.

The investment will, among other things, be used to annually renew around 2,000 kilometres of track and 2,000 sets of points. The renewal of a total of 2,000 further railway bridges will be launched in this decade. Around seven billion euros will be used for signal box technology alone.

The duration of ten years will provide a more sound basis for planning for DB and industry. This will make it possible to build up future-proof capacities in construction and planning companies and to make long-term deals with suppliers. This is an incentive for more capacity and innovation in the construction industry.

DB clients will benefit directly, for example through better accessibility and additional shelters at platforms. Moreover, there is more money available to ensure that construction works will have less impact on rail services and clients. Auxiliary bridges, additional points or signals that provide added flexibility will ensure capacity-efficient construction processes. New converter stations will make it possible to feed electricity from renewable sources into the railway power grid.

The Service Level and Funding Agreement is committed to full transparency and control. The Federal Railway Authority monitors the implementation of the Agreement. To measure the success of the Agreement, 17 criteria have been agreed. If DB fails to fulfil the requirements under the Agreement, penalty payments will be imposed. Quality indicators will document the condition of the network, the number of renewed bridges, the funds used for upgrading projects and much more.

The complete Service Level and Funding Agreement III can be found (in German only) at