TGV rescue deal bails out Alstom’s Belfort factory

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Photo: ClS / Shutterstock.com.

Alstom and the French government have reached a deal which will secure the future of the company’s Belfort manufacturing site beyond 2018.

France’s Minister of State for Industry, Christophe Sirugue, and Alstom’s chief executive, Henri Poupart-Lafarge, today announced an order for 15 new TGV Euroduplex units – in addition to six ordered by SNCF – 20 shunting locomotives and 30 intercity trains.

Last month, Alstom said it would have to close the facility, which employs around 480 people, because of lack of orders.

Prior to today, Alstom had not received any orders for locomotives in France for more than a decade and its current production line of TGV motors was coming to an end.

Announcing the plan for Belfort, Alstom said it will also allow for the development of maintenance and service activities on the site and that the company would work with other businesses on the diversification of Belfort into the production of “other rail and road vehicles”.

Henri Poupart-Lafarge said: “I am pleased by the announcements that have just been made and by the mobilisation of all stakeholders in order to find an industrial future for Belfort site and to consolidate the workload on other sites in France.

“Moreover, the fact that a strategic committee for the industry will be held soon is excellent news for the whole railway sector.”

TGV 001, the prototype which formed the basis of France’s iconic high-speed train, was built at Belfort.

The intercity trains will be built at Alstom’s Reichshoffen site, where many of the staff at Belfort were expected to be transferred following the factory’s closure.

3 COMMENTS

  1. Yet another example of French protectionism, non-doubt circumnavigating several EU laws in the process without any EU punishments levied. Once Brexit occurs watch as the French state props up its industries in the face of increasing German efficiency and we all know where that ends.

  2. A Non – Bombardier was subject to competition in bids due the UK Government abiding by EU Procurement laws. It had to compete with Siemens, Alstom, CAF etc, if you remember it lost the Thameslink contract to Siemens. The fact that it has since won bids is testament to its products. If you are in doubt look at the French procurement of rolling stock and compare it with the UK. Its very obvious who has been following EU procurement law and who has had a national bias in its procurement.

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