Article: From Jernbaneverket to Bane NOR

Winds of change are rolling over Norwegian railways. In 2015, the Norwegian Parliament approved a railway reform in the country, which has seen the phasing out of Jernbaneverket. As of 1st. of January 2017 two separate entities were created: ‘The Directorate for Railways’ and ‘Bane NOR’, the new National Infrastructure Manager; both owned by the Ministry for Transport.

The objective is to provide greater efficiency at all levels as the railway market opens up to competition. The new Directorate for Railways is now responsible for budget management and for assigning projects to Bane NOR – whilst Bane NOR is exclusively dedicated to the execution of the assigned projects, based on well-defined goals and budgets.

The Directorate for Railways is based in Oslo fully financed by the state and under the leadership of Elisabeth Enger (former Director of Jernbaneverket). Primary responsibilities include the overall management and coordination of all railway related activities throughout the sector, as well as the management of the Norwegian Railway Academy, responsible for training locomotive drivers and personnel in the traffic management.

The work of the Directorate now includes dealing with transport needs of the future, enforcing competition rules in passenger rail services, and defining framework conditions for the companies that own rolling stock.

This will give Bane NOR the ability to dedicate its resources and expertise to the planning and construction of all future railway developments in the country. From the 1st. of January, Bane NOR manages, maintains and refurbishes the railway infrastructure, including traffic management. Bane NOR is taking over most of Jernbaneverkets’ tasks and responsibilities, including its 3,900 employees. The value of all assets transferred is estimated in 143 billion Norwegian krone.

Additionally, Bane NOR is taking over ROM Eiendom’s assets from NSB (the main train operator in Norway) for an estimated value of 3.5 billion Norwegian krone; including 980 buildings, of which 315 are stations and 350 listed buildings. A separate subsidiary will be responsible to administrate all properties and Bane NOR will be able to outsource non-core business services.

The Norwegian Railway Authority has given Bane NOR its safety approval to become an infrastructure manager from 1 January 2017 until 2021. Its new CEO, Gorm Frimannslund, has been responsible for all Jernbaneverket’s infrastructure in Norway since 2014 and Jernbaneverket’s energy department, still will continue to be part of Bane NOR’s organisation, led by Terje Stømer, its director.

Created Friday, January 06, 2017

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