The NS thinks that it will take five years before the rail company will transport the same number of passengers again as before the corona crisis . Therefore, a loss of 4.7 billion euros in income will be taken into account in the coming years, according to the NS on Friday.
The NS hopes to save 1.4 billion euros over the next five years and to make other changes to be financially healthy again in 2024. During an online meeting with all twenty thousand employees, it was said that government support is necessary.
Bert Groenewegen, financial director of the NS, tells NRC that no layoffs are taking place for the time being. "Our starting point is getting smaller without being made redundant. That requires us to talk to employees about new positions or locations." That is why the NS wants to talk to the Participation Council and the unions.
The railway company emphasizes that an "affordable train ticket" is paramount in the measures still to be taken. "NS cannot and will not pass the losses on to the passenger by increasing the price of the train ticket," says the carrier. "NS wants to make every effort to keep the train attractive, with a pleasant responsible travel experience as the Netherlands was used to before the corona crisis."
Number of travelers significantly decreased due to corona crisis
Since mid-March, the number of daily travelers has fallen from 1.3 million to 110,000 due to the corona crisis. As of Tuesday 2 June, the NS will again run according to normal services, but with a passenger capacity of up to 40 percent. This is necessary to improve compliance with corona measures.
"Train travel will not be as it was for the time being," said the NS. The reasons are the small number of travelers, the expected contraction of the economy, working from home and alternative means of travel. In addition, Dutch people travel less often internationally.
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