The first sitting of the working group to discuss details of Ukrzaliznytsia's future cooperation with Deutsche Bahn, Germany's largest railway operator was held.
"It is important for us to ensure a document of cooperation with Deutsche Bahn that will be inked at the beginning of February encompasses all important aspects, including the safety and social component. We are aware that Ukrzaliznytsia is a strategic country’s asset. That is why we are now consulting with all the stakeholders to hear all the opinions," said Prime Minister Oleksiy Honcharuk.
The working group includes representatives of the Ministry of Infrastructure, Ukrzaliznytsia, the line Parliament’s committee on transport, key business associations and trade unions.
The meeting of the Verkhovna Rada Committee on Transport will be held shortly. At the Committee meeting present will be all parties concerned in order to hold in depth discussion of the future cooperation.
According to Minister of Infrastructure Vladyslav Kryklii, the Ministry will consult with the parliamentary committee, business associations, profile organizations and trade unions over the next week to discuss all details of the agreement.
The European Business Association experts expressed their readiness to join the working group: "Our organization positively assesses this initiative. We hope that this cooperation will help Ukrainian railways to get closer to European standards," Anna Derevyanko, Executive Director of the European Business Association said.
Representatives of the trade union of railway and transport builders also expressed their support. "Our organization represents the interests of 96% of the Ukrainian railways workers. We are ready to join a working group to discuss all the details of this collaboration. We are familiar with Deutsche Bahn's best practices of rail reform. We hope that this knowledge will allow to make Ukrainian railways efficient and modern. The most important thing is the support from the state, because we are talking about hundreds of thousands of railway employees today."
The PM stressed that the Ukrainian railway remains under the full control of the state, so the priority of the Government is to protect the interests of all people who work in the company and to create a modern, comfortable and safe railway based on the German experience.
At present, the Ukrainian side is conducting talks with German counterparts to shape the model for further cooperation.
More details will be unveiled in early February, when the Ukrainian party signs a Strategic Partnership Agreement with a German company.