Mazzoncini: We are a strategic investor for Greece

06/06/2016 Roma. Cerimonia in memoria di Modesta Valenti, anziana senza fissa dimora che mori' alla stazione Termini per mancanza di assisteza. Nella foto Renato Mazzoncini Amministratore Delegato Gruppo Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane

The sale of TrainOSE by Ferrovie Dello Stato Italiane S.p.A is an important milestone in the course of the international expansion of the Italian railways, Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane Group CEO Renato Mazzoncini said in an interview with the Athens-Macedonian News Agency (ANA) published on Friday.

He explained that the agreement is an opportunity for the development of Greece’s railways, which will now be able to rely on the know-how and experience of the Italian state railways. “We will now have an important role in European transport, both in passenger and freight transport,” he said.

Mazzoncini also said that this investment marks the opportunity for wider cooperation between Greece and Italy.

“This is an investment that is being made at the right time, as the new line (Athens-Thessaloniki) will be ready in January 2018 – and we will have to be ready on time.” When the interventions on the railway network are completed, he pointed out, the investment will reach 400 to 500 million euros.

Asked whether this investment is a project that is limited to economic cooperation between Greece and Italy, he said that “the main market we are addressing is Europe,” adding that it also aims at other countries that can connect via railways. For this reason, the tender was held under the approval of the European Union based on specific regulations. “The operational terms are European and are targeted at the European market,” he explained.

Ferrovie Dello Stato Italiane S.p.A. on Thursday signed an agreement to buy 100 pct of TrainOSE for 45 million euros, ending a four-year tender process and opening a new page in the Greek railway’s future.
The privatisation of TrainOSE was accompanied by a decision to file a European Commission case of state support to OSE worth 692 million euros.

Ferrovie Dello Stato Italiane S.p.A. is the third largest railway company in Europe and has agreed to enhance and grow TrainOSE using its know-how and expertise to create a significant railway services company.

Moreover, he stressed that the negotiations between the two countries lasted for about six months and noted that this agreement is an important development for Greece as the network remains public. “We are a strategic investor for Greece and not a sale to repay its debt obligations”, he said.