Rail Delivery Group launches industry partnership that will lead to £85 billion worth of economic growth in UK.
A single unified plan for Britain’s railways that promises to deliver up to £85 billion worth of economic benefits has been launched by the Rail Delivery Group (RDG). Titled ‘ In Partnership for Britain’s
Prosperity’, the plan makes four commitments from industry to drive further improvement in the railway and deliver significant economic growth.
The plan commits RDG members – which include Network Rail, train and freight operators - to; creating more jobs and increasing diversity, boosting local communities through localised investment and decision-making, increasing customer satisfaction, and strengthening the railway’s economic contribution by maintaining investment and focusing on efficiency.
These pledges will be accompanied by the delivery of £50bn worth of public and private investment, which the plan says will yield 100,000 new jobs in the rail sector and supply chain, and £85bn of wider economic growth from providing better connections to housing, employment and new business opportunities.
This is in addition to the £31bn of economic benefits the rail network is estimated to deliver currently each year.
Speaking at the launch of the plan at St Pancras International on
October 30, RDG Chief Executive Paul Plummer said the plan was fully backed by all train operating companies and NR, rail freight companies and the supply chain.
“The railway runs on partnership, the best of both worlds, not opposites, and taxpayers’ and investors’ money combining to deliver large benefits for the UK economy.
“Today is a landmark coming- together. This plan, delivered by a changing partnership railway, will secure the economic benefits from current investment by the public and private sectors, and enable further improvement and investment.
“That’s why today, we are making four commitments for change to safeguard our economic contribution whilst delivering the best deal for taxpayers, to improve services for customers, better connect local communities and secure more jobs in rail. This plan will deliver the railway that the economy, customers and communities need as Britain prepares to leave the EU.
“Working together as one railway, delivering one vital public service, in a million-and-one local ways. This is a once-in-ageneration opportunity. This is our plan for a real Partnership for Britain’s Prosperity.”
Mark Carne, Chief Executive of Network Rail, added: “Over the next 18 months, passengers and communities across the country will see a transformation in the services that they receive. Thousands of new trains will be introduced as the culmination of years of heavy investment in improving our railway comes to fruition, stimulating the economy by delivering new job and housing opportunities.
“Network Rail’s transformation is bringing track and train more closely together for the benefit of passengers. This plan will accelerate change and deliver further investment and improvements, bringing more improvements for passengers, communities and businesses across Britain now and in the long term.”
Both the Rail Supply Group (RSG) and the Railway Industry Association (RIA) backed the move, with RIA Chief Executive Darren Caplan urging ‘everyone in rail to get behind this plan’ and Gordon Wakeford, Industry Chair of the RSG adding that the supply chain is ‘committing and innovating and investing’ to support delivery of the plan.
RDG members have been asked to demonstrate what these commitments mean to passengers locally, while a progress report will be published annually.
A single, unified plan designed to deliver £85 billion to the UK economy has been unveiled by the Rail Delivery Group. Virgin Trains Class 390s and CrossCountry ‘220s’ wait at Manchester Piccadilly.