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RMT revealed today that Scotrail passengers and taxpayers could be subsiding bailout loans to the beleaguered company and being charged to the tune of an eye-watering 8 per cent.

Scotrail is owned is by Dutch State Rail, Nederlandse Spoorwegen (NS), and in an article in the Dutch press reporting NS support for its subsidiaries, including Scotrail, NS financial director Bert Groenenwegen says: “The additional payments consist of loans from the parent company to the subsidiary. 8% interest is paid on this and there is no reason to assume that the money cannot be repaid at the end of the concession.”

This rate of return clearly outstrips the Rail Delivery Group’s claim of an average return of 2 per cent for train company investments.

The revelation comes on the day that the Scottish Parliament is due to vote on whether the Scottish government should enforce the ScotRail break clause to bring the current franchise to an end in 2022.

RMT general secretary Mick Cash said that the loan by Dutch State rail to its Scottish subsidiary will have to be paid back at an 8 per cent rate, when instead the money could be used to improve services and cut fares.

“Once again, it is the Scottish passengers and taxpayers who are paying the price of privatisation, and that is why 25 years after the UK legislation that brought in the rail privatisation disaster the Scotland Parliament should today take a stand and vote to begin to bring this madness to an end in Scotland,” he said.

THE FIREFIGHTERS' DILEMMA

TUCG: MARK SERWOTKA ON THE FIGHT AGAINST AUSTERITY

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BOOK: COST OF LIVING CRISIS

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By MIchael Calderbank

Foreword by Mark Serwotka, PCS General Secretary

 

Buy now from www.radicalread.co.uk

Based on research commissioned by the TUCG, the book examines why costs have risen for all items of expenditure, ranging from housing and child care to food and transport. He makes practical proposals on how these costs can be reduced. He also delivers an uncompromising message to the leaders of all mainstream Westminster Parties: it is time to end the politics of austerity, an ideological project to cut the size of the state permanently.