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Federal Railways to slash budget

Swiss Federal Railways wants to cut spending by more than half a billion francs by 2017.

The cost-cutting measures, in combination with more expensive tickets, are intended to help finance new rolling stock as well as higher access fees. The proposed savings total SFr550 million ($640 million).

The company plans to reduce structural and administrative costs by SFr220 million by 2017, said CEO Andreas Meyer on Wednesday.

“Efficiency will be improved, but jobs will be cut as well,” said Meyer. He declined to say exactly how many jobs, but said he hoped that many cuts would be the result of retirement rather than redundancy.

Swiss Federal Railways also wants to save on infrastructure costs and get through its maintenance backlog.

The announcement comes despite good mid-year figures; mid-year profit was stable at SFr166.5 million.

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR