Sunday 18 April 2021

The new government must spend billions on mobility: NS chief

Overcrowding at rush hour has become the norm. Photo: Jonathan Marks

The next government will have to spend billions of euros on improving mobility to make sure the Netherlands remains competitive, NS chief executive Roger van Boxtel said on Tuesday.

Without sufficient investment, the Netherlands will grind to a halt on both the roads and the railways, Van Boxtel said. The NS is planning to invest €3bn on new trains and improvements in the next few years, he said.

Van Boxtel was speaking at the publication of the 2016 NS annual accounts, which show the state-owned railway invested €791m last year. At the same time, the NS’ average customer satisfaction rating rose from 74 out of 100 to 77. More trains were on time, taking the punctuality rating to 91.3%.

The annual report also shows that last year NS paid €600,000 in compensation to two senior members of staff who lost their jobs.

The names of the managers were not made public and they were not part of the management board. They were, however, in key positions, the report showed.

MPs have criticised the payouts and want to know if they were approved by finance minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem.

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