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Kadhammar, Peter

Columnist, Aftonbladet, Sweden

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Aftonbladet - Sweden | 15/01/2014

Privatisation has ruined Sweden's rail system

Following a series of cases of trains derailing, Swedish railway operators have come under heavy fire. The left-liberal tabloid Aftonbladet sees the sweeping deregulation of the system as the cause of the problems: "Nowhere else in Europe is rail transport as heavily privatised and vulnerable to competition as in Sweden. We're ahead of Germany, the UK and the Netherlands in this respect. ... According to conservative mythology this should mean we have Europe's best railway network. The more private initiatives, the more operators interested in making a profit, the better it is for the citizens, or rather customers, runs the logic. But this is not the case. ... Hyper-liberal Sweden is among the countries that invest most in their railways. Unfortunately international comparisons show that the quality of service is lower than in most other countries. This is what the state report on the organisation of rail transport concludes. It should be compulsive reading for all liberal fanatics."

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