Govt in bid to cut Lithuanian Railway's passenger losses
Lithuania's government is taking measures to cut state-run railway company Lietuvos Geležinkeliai's (Lithuanian Railways) losses linked to the transportation of passengers, set to reach around 34 million 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 million euros in compensation this year, paid to Lietuvos Geležinkeliai 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 Norkienė, a spokeswoman for the ministry, told BNS Lithuania.
In her words, 2.5 million people traveled by rail in the first half of this year, up 5.5 percent from the same period last year. But the number is still too low and Lietuvos Geležinkeliai incurs losses from this activity.
The train occupancy rate now stands at just 35 percent, the ministry says.