Siemens has negotiated a framework agreement to take over Praha-based rolling stock maker CKD Dopravní, currently controlled by state banking company Konsoldiacní Banka (RG 4.00 p253). An agreement to buy 61% of the shares for KC750m is expected to be signed by the end of September. Trams and metro cars for central and eastern Europe will be built at the Praha-Zlicín factory, where KC500m is to be invested, employing about 800 of the current 1000 staff.

Members of the French Railway Industry Federation recorded a total turnover of €1·62bn in 2000, down from €2·24bn the year before. At €433·1m, the SNCF component dropped to its lowest level ever at only 27% of the total turnover in 2000, while the contribution from other domestic customers was up 18·3% at a record €585·7m.

Patentes Talgo and Ingelectric are seeking funding from Spain’s Ministry of Science & Technology to develop a gauge-changing electric power car capable of operating at speeds up to 270 km/h. The four-year programme is expected to cost a total of Pts10bn.

On July 2 Westinghouse Signals Australia Ltd was renamed Invensys Rail Systems Australia. The Westinghouse Signals Australia and Foxboro Transportation brands will remain as the names of the company’s two business divisions.

ABC-Naco has entered into an agreement with Zhuzhou Rolling Stock Works to form an equity joint venture for the manufacture and sale of Swing Motion suspension systems and related components in China. Owned 40% by ABC-Naco, the new venture will be located at Zhuzhou’s existing steel foundry in Hunan province.

German Railway and Arcor are to set up a joint railway telecommunications company in 2002. DB will own 49·9% of the new company. A formal agreement is due to be signed next month.

Häni Prolectron of Switzerland has sold its railway electronics division to RailTronic AG.

Malaysian firm EDMS Consultants Sdn Bhd has been appointed to market technical documentation and services from InfoVision Systems in Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, Thailand, the Philippines, Vietnam and Indonesia.

ThyssenKrupp has sold its railway track business Thyssen Schienen Technik to Voest-Alpine Schienen GmbH of Austria, with effect from July 31, and subject to EU approval.

British composites supplier W & J Tod has opened a new mass-transit component factory at Lopen in Somerset.

Bulgarian State Railways and Koncar of Croatia have jointly established Konel, a Sofia-based company to repair electric locomotives, trams and wagons.

GrantRail opened the first phase of its purpose-built corporate headquarters in Doncaster on July 23.

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