Network rail may sell off 18 of the UK’s largest stations
22 February 2016 • Author: Katie Sadler, Digital Content Producer, European Railway Review
According to a report in the Independent on Sunday, Network Rail is preparing to privatise 18 of the UK’s largest stations after hiring Citigroup to look at options to reduce debt.
The report published today, reveals the infrastructure manager has hired bankers at Citigroup to look at options for the outright sale part sale of 18 major stations, including London Waterloo, Reading, Leeds and Edinburgh Waverley, to reduce Network Rail’s reported debt which could reach £50bn by 2020.
Network Rail, the Treasury and the Department for Transport have commissioned a series of reviews of the organisation, including the Shaw report into Network Rail which will advise on the longer term future shape and financing of Network Rail including privatisation or the part-financing of infrastructure rail projects. Recommendations are expected next month.
Sell off could reduce Network Rail debt which could reach £50bn by 2020
A source told the Independent on Sunday that Citi has been asked “to pull together options to realise best value from our stations”. The source added: “It could be just the retail; it could be a concession option like St Pancras. It could be some, could be all. It might be same answer for all or treating them individually.”
A Network Rail spokesman told the independent, “Generating funds to invest in building a bigger, better railway is at the core of our disposals strategy. We’re taking a long hard look at our assets, ensuring we keep what we need to grow and expand the railway, but then looking at ways we can realise best value from the rest to reinvest.”