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Scandal PostBus to reimburse more than CHF200 million

PostBus depot

PostBus depot - it's time for a fresh start, says Swiss Post

(Keystone)

The state-owned PostBus company is to hand back CHF205.3 million ($214 million) to the government, cantons and communes following a scandal over illegal subsidies.

The firm is obliged to pay back CHF188.1 million and is paying a further CHF17.2 million voluntarily.

Swiss Postexternal link, of which PostBus is a subsidiary, the Federal Office of Transportexternal link, and the Conference of Cantonal Directors of Public Transportexternal link signed a framework dealexternal link on the issue on Friday 

“We want to repair the damage and make the payments as quickly as possible with not too much red tape,” said Urs Schwaller, the chairman of the board at Swiss Post, at a press conference in Zurich. It was an important step and a new start for PostBus, he added.

The CHF188.1 million covers the years 2007-2018; the voluntary payment is for pre-2007.

Scandal

PostBus - known for its alpine network of distinctive yellow buses – has come under intense scrutiny after an official audit found that it had manipulated accounts between 2007 and 2015 to pocket millions in federal and cantonal subsidies. This also involved subsidiaries abroad.

The scandal led to the resignation of the entire PostBus top management as well as the CEO of Swiss Post and several members of the board.

On Friday, it was confirmed that the contract of André Burri, the head of PostBus’ French branch, had been terminated.


SDA-ATS/ilj

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