The Minister Delegate for Transport Clément Beaune gives himself the "budgetary priority" of increasing the resources devoted to the rail network, but it "would be dishonest to say" that we can do everything, he declares in an interview with the Journal of Sunday.
“Our network has been neglected for the past thirty years.
Amplifying the effort made over the past five years is my budgetary priority,” said the Minister.
The envelope currently devoted to the maintenance of the network is insufficient, he acknowledges.
“One of my priorities, from the start of the school year, is to think with SNCF Réseau about possible solutions or additional means”, he assures, while the CEO of SNCF Jean-Pierre Farandou proposes a plan evaluated at 100 billion euros to be able to double the share of rail in the transport of passengers and goods in France.
"We are going to put in place, based on a program over several years, a precise assessment of needs and priorities to modernize our network", he explains.
“Improve everyday transport”
“It would be dishonest to say that we can do high speed, regeneration, support for small lines at the same time, without sequencing or prioritizing”, however, nuances Clément Beaune.
The TGV is for him “not exceeded”.
"We can use innovative financing solutions for new projects by bringing all the partners around the table, State, communities, Europe, project companies, and by mobilizing local tax resources", he recalls, while former Prime Minister Jean Castex recently relaunched major projects like Bordeaux-Toulouse.
But "everyday transport, often metropolitan, such as the Transilien in the Paris region, remains our priority because improving it has a direct impact on people's lives", he adds.
“My objective is clear: to improve everyday transport and accelerate the ecological transition.
Clément Beaune also considers that the summer is “exceptional”, with both the strong return of the public to the trains after the health crisis and high temperatures.
Despite "fragilities on the network (and) traffic slowdowns", "the public rail service has faced this situation of accelerated recovery", he believes, insisting on a necessary improvement in passenger information in problem case.
He also wants to "minimize summer fare peaks" for train tickets, the minister said.