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Portugal to spend 168 million euros on 22 new trains

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Staff Writer | September 7, 2018
Portugal's Council of Ministers approved the purchase by Portugal Railways (CP) of 22 new trains at a cost of 168.21 million euros ($195.49 million) on Thursday.
Portugal train
Europe   The new trains are destined for regional rail networks
"This is an historic moment for CP," said Pedro Marques, Portugal's minister for planning and infrastructure. "It's the first time in 20 years that CP has a plan to acquire new rolling stock."

"There is an obvious need to upgrade the rolling stock for regional lines," Marques added, in a press conference that followed the Council of Ministers meeting.

The new trains are destined for regional rail networks.

The announcement comes following a week of criticism over a lack of investment in the rail network.

Increased rail use during the summer, with many Portuguese people using trains to go on holiday or visit family in the provinces, has brought to light the rundown parts of the network.

Regional town halls all over the country have called for urgent government investment to modernize tracks and trains that have been in use for decades.

Disgruntlement grew on Monday when it was announced that CP had signed four new contracts to rent equipment from Renfe, Spain's national rail operator.

It emerged that CP rents rolling stock from Renfe at a cost of 10.4 million euros per year, money some observers felt would be better spent on investing in new equipment. The CP confirmed the rental arrangement will come to an end once the 22 new trains are acquired.

A public tender to supply the new stock will run from 2019 to 2026.