Wednesday 18 September 2019

The Fyra high-speed train debacle cost the Dutch state €11bn

fyra trainThe parliamentary committee looking into the Fyra high-speed train debacle estimates the cost to the Dutch state to be just over €10.8bn so far, broadcaster Nos said on Wednesday.

In addition, travellers did not get what they were promised, MP Madeleine van Toorenburg, who is heading the inquiry, told a news conference.

Fyra trains were supposed to travel between Amsterdam and Brussels at speeds of up to 250 kph from the end of 2012 but were quickly withdrawn from service after a string of failures.

Dutch railway company NS and the train’s Italian maker AnsaldoBreda came to an agreement on the financial aspects of the cancellation but no blame has ever been formally apportioned.

Van Toorenburg said on Wednesday the case is far too complex to blame any one person. So far, the committee has heard evidence from 80 people and will hear a further 40 in public from next week onwards.

‘There were serious ambitions to link Europe’s cities via a high-speed network, but we have to conclude not much has come of them,’ she is quoted as saying by news website Nu.nl.

Former transport minister Tineke Netelenbos and former finance minister Gerrit Zalm are among those who have been summoned to appear.

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