Reform of the rail industry needed to reduce commuter costs



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Dr Richard Wellings responds to announced rail fare rises for 2015

Commenting on today’s planned announcement for a rise in regulated rail fares next year, Dr Richard Wellings, Head of Transport at the Institute of Economic Affairs, said:

“It is understandable that today’s rail fare increases will further frustrate commuters already feeling the squeeze from high living costs. Passengers should, however, be prepared to pay more. As particular routes become increasingly congested, it is right that the heavy demand is reflected in the price.

“Looking ahead, the government should adopt measures to reform the rail industry. Improving the efficiency of the network and removing expensive bureaucracy, will reduce the financial burden placed on passengers.

“Scrapping HS2 as well as other uneconomic rail investment schemes would free up large amounts of taxpayers’ money and further reduce the cost to commuters.”

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Notes to editors:

The mission of the Institute of Economic Affairs is to improve understanding of the fundamental institutions of a free society by analysing and expounding the role of markets in solving economic and social problems.

The IEA is a registered educational charity and independent of all political parties.