Govt in bid to cut Lithuanian Railway’s passenger losses

Lithuania’s government is taking measures to cut state-run railway company Lietuvos Gelezinkeliai’s (Lithuanian Railways) losses linked to the transportation of passengers, set to reach around 34 mln euros this year.

The Transport Ministry suggests introducing a combined passenger service when passengers take part of their journey by rail and are then taken by bus.

Such a scheme is estimated to allow the government to save at least 1.3 mln euros in compensation this year, paid to Lietuvos gelezinkeliai from the state budget for the transportation of passengers.

“The Transport Ministry has decided to trial a new combined rail-bus scheme in Lithuania, which is widely used in Western Europe, when buses are used to bring passengers to trams, metro or railways,” Jurgita Norkiene, a spokeswoman for the ministry.

In her words, 2.5 mln people traveled by rail in the first half of this year, up 5.5 % from the same period last year. But the number is still too low and Lietuvos Gelezinkeliai incurs losses from this activity.

The train occupancy rate now stands at just 35%, the ministry says.

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