Canada: The provincial government of Nova Scotia has retained Ernst & Young to sell the assets of Sydney Steel Corp. This follows the termination of an agreement to sell the company to Rail Associates Inc of the USA for C$30m.

Germany: On January 27 the Rail Vehicle Systems Division of Knorr-Bremse AG reported sales of DM1·2bn for 1999, up 11% from the previous year. The division suffered the impact of low margins in the European market and of ’substantial losses’ incurred on major projects in Germany, but its North American subsidiaries showed ’significant improvement’.

Japan: As part of plans to expand its railway business, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries is to enter the LRV market with establishment of production facilities at its Mihara works in Hiroshima prefecture. The first cars should be ready in early 2002.

Netherlands: Following the acquisition of ODS Spoor, Kloos Railway Systems became Kloos Oving bv on February 1. Administration functions have been centralised in Alblasserdam.

Romania: The State Ownership Fund was to offer its 76·7% stake in rolling stock builder Astra Vagoane Arad for sale by auction on February 16. With a reserve price of 4250 lei per share, the sale was expected to raise around 466850bn lei.

Spain: Patentes Talgo has reported sales of Pts20bn for 1999, up 24% on the previous year. The company’s proposed stock market flotation may be dependent upon the success in the Madrid - Barcelona competition of its trainset developed with Adtranz (RG 1.00 p6), which is due to begin trials in April.