The Welsh Metro network is in major need of improvement, which is why the Welsh government has been urged to apply for money from the European Union (EU) to help fund repairs to the line.
UK rail minister Paul Maynard told Welsh MPs the EU could help finance the £600 million cost of updating South Wales Metro links, with £125 million coming from the UK government and £150 million from Europe, BBC News reported.
Speaking to the Welsh Affairs Select Committee, he said: “If the Welsh government continues to make bids into the EU while we are still a member of the EU and is successful in those bids, for example for the South Wales Metro project, then after we have left the EU we will guarantee that funding in the future.”
Therefore, he advised the government to make the application as soon as possible to ensure it is accepted and guarantee the funding before the UK leaves the EU.
The money will pay for better trains, light rail or tram services, and faster buses in Cardiff and the valleys.
Four firms are in competition to deliver an upgrade to the rail network and propose ideas on a new light rail or tram system. The decision on which company will be chosen for the project will be revealed in October 2018.
It is not just Wales that needs improvement to its train network, and Network Rail’s chief executive Mark Carne recently called for businesses to provide more funding into rail improvements to support the industry.
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