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National Express to operate German commuter services

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C2c operator National Express has been awarded two 15-year regional commuter rail contracts in Germany.

German authorities yesterday (February 6) confirmed plans to hand the two contracts, which serve the cities of Cologne and Bonn in the North Rhine-Westphalia region, to the UK operator.

The contracts, which are worth around 1.6 billion euros, are for a regional express service between Rheine-Munster-Cologne-Krefeld and a Bonn-Cologne-Wuppertal stopping service.

The services are currently run by Deutsche Bahn and carry around 18 million passengers each year.

National Express will start operating on the routes in December 2015, after first procuring 36 new electric trains on behalf of the local authorities.

Dean Finch, National Express Group chief executive, said: “National Express is delighted to have been selected to run these two German commuter rail contracts.

“I’m particularly pleased that our success in running the UK’s best performing franchise has been recognised by the German authorities.

“We look forward to maintaining these high standards and serving the people of North Rhine-Westphalia for many years to come.”


  1. Excellent news! Over the past few years, German, Dutch and French rail operators have been making steady inroads into Britain’s rail industry, whereas British companies seem to have been kept out of Europe. I only hope that other UK train operators now follow the example of National Express and are successful in winning contracts in mainland Europe.


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