Abellio has launched an ambitious programme to improve the train fleet as part of its franchise commitment. Their program will make rail transportation more attractive to commuters, tourists and recreational travellers by improving performance and on-board equipment throughout the fleet. Matheson told MSP in Holyrood that he had rejected Abellio`s request to increase the necessary subsidy from 2022, which meant that the franchise ended this year. Transport Scotland said the current franchise agreement required ministers and Abellio to review the amount of government subsidies for the remaining five years of the contract and to determine whether additional subsidies called “rebasing” should be paid. The Dutch company has been running the franchise since 2015, but has been criticised for cancellations and performance levels. I thank the cabinet secretary for the early vision of his statement. I warmly welcome the end of the franchise and I deplore the fact that we cannot go directly to nationalisation. I hope that the Labour Party and others will call for full decentralisation. The brand allows taxpayers to save money by offering a consistent look that will not change in new franchise operators. In the past, trains and stations have been renamed with each new franchise, which has proven costly, troublesome and unnecessary. The fragmented appearance has also sowed confusion in public opinion with different signage, colours and marks, creating a clear and consistent visual identity for ScotRail. If so, after phase two of the EMA, are there plans or discussions directly from the Scottish Government for redundancies within the Scotrail franchise and Caledonian Schl-fer franchise? Transport Minister Michael Matheson, who represented The ruling Scottish National Party, made no apology in his statement.
“We are not convinced that the substantial increase in public subsidies, which would otherwise be necessary, would bring equal benefits for passengers, municipalities and businesses. I published a communication today to inform Abellio Scotrail of the decision. As a result, the current franchise agreement is expected to expire in March 2022. (1). “We know that the Scotrail franchise agreement stipulates that there will be no mandatory agreements. We do not think that this information is another railway company in Scotland. Last year, the Scottish Government acknowledged that it would allow a public sector to compete with the next franchise, while remaining close to approving its nationalisation. The ScotRail franchise operates approximately 2,400 train lines per day and offers more than 93 million passenger journeys per year. It is the largest individual mission of Scottish ministers, worth more than $7 billion over 10 years.
Since last weekend, growing communities in north Glasgow have had access to a new station in Robroyston. The December 2019 schedule change, which took place this week, resulted in an additional 10,000 seats per day on the network. This means additional railcars on our routes from Edinburgh to Glasgow and on our busy fife and borders, as well as additional services in the north-east to maximise the benefits of our infrastructure investments. Since the launch of the franchise in 2015, we have increased the network`s capacity by approximately 125,000 seats per day.