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PUBLIC TRANSPORT

New law gives transport operators the green light

The government is to allow private transport companies to provide public bus services, in a bid to improve services and prompt people to use public transport.

New law gives transport operators the green light

“We see opportunities to complement other public transport and we are planning a number of pilot projects in 2012,” confirms Ingvar Ryggesjö, Information Officer at Swebus in daily newspaper Metro.

The new law on public transport came into effect on January 1st but ever since the initiative was launched, not just Swebus, but many companies have shown an interest and have enrolled for the government’s pilot project.

Authorities believe co-operation between public and private organisations will be beneficial to all areas of Sweden, although the pilot project for 2012 is primarily focused on the Öresund region.

“Many commute across the channel and they don’t have a great deal of choice in terms of transport operators,” said Ryggesjö.

It is a matter of finding public transport connections where it would be profitable to run such business.

However, the time it takes to travel still remains an issue and in some areas it is faster to travel from A to B by car.

“In the Stockholm region we are interested to see the impact on the cross-link connections, such as the Täby-Kista line. It takes fifteen minutes to go by car but nearly an hour to travel by public transport,” says Rolf Kolmodin, Communications Officer at public transport operator Nobina to Metro.

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TRAINS

Railway operator SJ to double train capacity over five years

After an increasing number of people in Sweden travelled by train in 2019's third quarter, railway operator SJ is now investing to double its capacity.

Railway operator SJ to double train capacity over five years
Railway operator SJ will invest in 30 long-distance trains and 50 regional trains. Photo: Jon Olav Nesvold / NTB scanpix / TT

In the third quarter, SJ's profit before tax was 198 million kronor, up from only 93 million kronor in the same period last year. 

The company said the main reason for the rise in profit and sales was that more people were choosing train travel over other methods of transport, and that investments had been made to make train travel more competitive. 

“We have seen this trend for many years. During the third quarter we have increased our offer and seen a significant increase in journeys,” said CEO Crister Fritzson.

Between January and September, journeys with SJ trains increased by 11 percent. This news comes a day after figures from airport operator Swedavia revealed an eight percent decrease in domestic flights. The focus on the climate crisis is a likely contributing factor, Fritzson said.

Punctuality for long-distance trains, measured by the proportion of trains which were five minutes delayed or less, also improved in the third quarter to 82 percent, up from 75 percent. For medium distance trains, punctuality was 93 percent, an improvement on the previous figure of 88 percent.

And now, a total of 12 billion kronor will be invested in new regional and long-distance trains as well as upgrading existing X 2000-trains to increase their capacity by 15 percent. These upgraded trains will be brought out next year, while SJ will also invest in 30 new long-distance trains able to travel at 250 kmph and around 50 new regional trains.

All in all, this will amount to a 50 percent increase in capacity over the next five years.

Vocabulary

profit – (en) vinst

investment – (en) investering

competitive (in a financial sense) – konkurrenskraftig

punctuality – (en) punktlighet

improvement – (en) förbättring

We're aiming to help our readers improve their Swedish by translating vocabulary from some of our news stories. Did you find it useful? Do you have any suggestions? Let us know.

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