SIGNING of an agreement on July 29 formally established the first regional passenger train operator in Poland. Koleje Mazowieckie is owned 49% by Polish State Railways’ regional business unit PKP Przewozy Regionalne and 51% by the Mazowieckie district administration.

From the beginning of this year, regional governments have been allowed to take responsibility for local rail services, and Mazowieckie is the first to do so. PKP is expected to transfer some of its rolling stock and other assets to the new company.

A few days later, Deputy President of open-access freight operator Rail Polska Janusz Wellman revealed that the company was planning to buy up two more transport companies. Rail Polska acquired Kolex and Zec-Trans last year, and hopes to achieve a 10% share of the Polish rail freight market by the end of 2005 (RG 6.04 p339). Rail Polska has expressed interest in bidding for PKP Cargo, but on July 27 Infrastructure Minister Krysztof Opawski announced the state railway’s freight business would not now be privatised before 2007.

  • Infrastructure manager PKP Polskie Linie Kolejowe has appointed a consortium of Mott MacDonald and Kolproject to supervise network upgrading works under a €135·5m programme financed by the EU Cohesion Fund. Improvements to track, overhead electrification, earthworks, structures and level crossings are planned at 134 locations in southern and western Poland.