EU Commission investigates state aid

The European Commission is investigating possible unjustified state aid to Deutsche Bahn subsidiary DB Cargo. The Commission had received a complaint from a competitor and initiated an in-depth investigation, the authority announced on Monday in Brussels. Among other things, it is about whether the parent company will bear the losses of the freight railway DB Cargo and whether this freight subsidiary will benefit from the parent company’s unusually cheap services. It will also be examined whether loans could be taken out particularly cheaply. As a state-owned company, Deutsche Bahn has a high credit rating and can therefore borrow more cheaply than many others, it said. DB Cargo has a market share of just under 50 percent in Germany. The Network of European Railways (NEE), the merger of the competitors, praised the investigation. “We have repeatedly heard from our members about incomprehensibly priced offers from DB Cargo and are looking forward to the result of the investigation with great anticipation,” said association head Ludolf Kerkeling. Deutsche Bahn assured the Commission of its cooperation in the examination, but explained: “The fact is: DB Cargo AG has not received any aid that distorts competition. Deutsche Bahn has always acted in accordance with European law.”

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