25 November 2014
RMT Press Office
RMT responds to growing rumours that the Government is about to name the winner of the franchise to run the East Coast Mainline, possibly as early as tomorrow morning.
“It is a national disgrace that the government is about to confirm that it is bulldozing ahead with the re-privatisation of the East Coast Main Line despite all the figures showing that the current public sector operator is handing over a billion pounds back to the British people while delivering huge improvements in service and customer satisfaction.
“It is simply ludicrous to even contemplate re-privatisation when not only have there been two previous private sector failures on the East Coast route but when the public-sector rescue operation has been such a stunning success. This is pure industrial vandalism and the strong rumour that a company involving the French-state operator is in poll position to mop up this vital, strategic North/South route says it all. This Government is happy to have state ownership of our railways as long as it isn’t by the British state, in the interests of the British people.”
“While domestic public ownership puts money back into the coffers that can be reinvested in our railways the private operators, overwhelmingly owned and controlled by European state rail outfits, suck out colossal sums in subsidies and profits – that’s what privatisation means. The imminent decision to hand this profitable and successful public rail operation back to the vultures is based purely on hard-right political ideology and RMT is committed to continuing the fight to block this betrayal of the British people right up to polling day and beyond.”