Reform of the Austrian Federal Railroad Act

  • Wilfried Puwein

A bill regulating the Austrian Federal Railroads (ÖBB) is presently being prepared by the Austrian government. The ÖBB is to be accorded the status of an independent enterprise (state owned limited company), to raise its economic efficiency and performance. A comparison with other railroad companies may help to reveal economic weaknesses of the ÖBB. The question arises whether the intended reforms will yield the expected improvements. Controversy has arisen primarily with regard to services rendered in the "public interest".