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Congestion charging back next year

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11:43 CET+01:00
Stockholm's congestion charge is to be reintroduced during the first half of 2007, with the project being led by a Moderate Party politician who voted against the scheme.

Carl Cederschiöld, the capital's former mayor, has been given the job of negotiating with interest groups in the Stockholm region to work out how to solve the area's traffic problems.

Proposals for the new congestion charge will be presented by 1st on March. Cederschiöld says the reasons that he voted against the charge no longer apply.

"I voted no because there was no link between what you paid and what you got for your money. Now there is," he said.

Infrastructure minister Åsa Torstensson said that the money would be used only to finance road building.

Sweden's parliament, the Riksdag, will soon vote on the reintroduction of the charge, which will pave the way for the scheme to be implemented in the first half of 2007. It had previously been proposed that the charge would be reintroduced in 2008 at the earliest.

Hans Rode, head of the Swedish National Road Administration in Stockholm, will before the end of the year make a proposal for a new surface rail line to replace the planned City Tunnel, which is being scrapped on cost grounds.

Cederschiöld also has a brief to present a complete transport solution for the capital and the surrounding region, including plans for roads, railways and public transport. His report is due to be presented in December 2007.

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