Train ticket prices to go up as of Jan 1

Photo HZ PP logo.jpg
The Passenger Transport division of the Croatian Railways (HZ) company has requested an increase in ticket prices so travel by train will most probably cost 15 per cent more as of January 1, the division's director, Drazen Ratkovic, said earlier this week.

He said train travel prices had not gone up for years, although fuel had by 25 per cent and electricity for electric locomotive was also a cost.

Under the new time table, 717 trains will operate daily, 45 less than now.

HZ's Passenger Transport expects HRK 158.1 million in losses this year. By the end of the year, the division will launch a public tender for the procurement of 44 new motor trains. Ratkovic said 200 workers would leave the company and 250 its subsidiaries by year's end.

The chairman of the board of HZ's Cargo division, Ivan Leskovic, said the division's losses this year would amount to HRK 91.9 million and that 878 workers would be laid off by the end of the year. He added that 444 had already been laid off.

He announced another 427 layoffs by July 1 and 182.2 million in investments in 2013.

HZ's Infrastructure division expects to make HRK 100,000 in profits this year and HRK 200,000 in 2013, said board chairman Darko Pericic. He said 370 workers had left the company by the end of October and that 650 would be laid off by year's end.

Pericic said the company might have to pay HRK 170 million in damages to workers.

Transport Minister Sinisa Hajdas Doncic said 2012 was the year in which dealing with long neglected problems in HZ had begun. He said layoffs were tough, notably when the real sector was not creating jobs, but they were necessary to make the system profitable and effective as well as ready for the open market.