Davorin Kobak - Articles and news items
The year 2007 for Croatian Railways has been marked by intense action in two basic areas. In one of the areas, the aim was to carry out the restructuring process which entered its key phase during the year. Pursuant to the Railways Law and the Act on the Division of Croatian Railways, a holding company was created, comprising five companies: HZ Passenger Transport, HZ Cargo, HZ Train Traction, HZ Infrastructure and HZ Holding.
The history of Croatian Railways dates back to 1860 when the Kotoriba-Cvakovec-Pragersko line was built in the scope of the Budapest-Vienna line. Croatian Railways were established on 5 October 1991, upon the proclamation of the independence of the Republic of Croatia. The railways became a member of the UIC in 1992, joined CER in 2003 and are one of the youngest railways in Europe’s railway network. In parallel to Croatia’s negotiations to accede to the EU, Croatian Railways are enforcing their modernisation and restructuring plan so as to be ready for the moment when Croatia becomes a full member of the EU.
The restructuring and modernisation of Croatian Railways are a part of the comprehensive preparations for the accession of Croatia to the European Union. €1.9 billion will be invested in rolling stock and infrastructure from 2006 and 2010. The majority of that amount is to be invested in the modernisation of HZ lines that are Croatian sections of Pan-European Traffic Corridors, in the procurement of modern traction vehicles and rolling stock, and the automation and computerisation of business operations. Thus, Croatian Railways will be ready for the liberalisation of Croatian lines and their access to other railway carriers (operators) since they will be well prepared for the market competition on their own lines; they will also be ready to appear as an operator on the lines of neighbouring countries.