Sweden. SJ AB
|Date of agreement:||24 Aug 2015|
|Amount in SEK:||SEK 770 million|
|Amount in EUR:||EUR 81 million|
|NACE sector / loan type:||Land transport|
This loan contributes to climate change mitigation: 100%
Financing from NIB Environmental Bond proceeds
NEB-eligible share: 100%
NEB category: Clean transport solutions
Amount disbursed: EUR 81.5 million
Note: For loans in other currencies than EUR, the equivalent in EUR is based on the exchange rate effective for the disbursement. Read more about the NIB Environmental Bonds
The loan has been provided for the technological upgrade of X2000 trains that have been in operation for twenty years. The company is set to modernise 36 train sets of this type. SJ plans to complete most of the physical upgrade process by the last quarter of 2018.
Of the total investment, around 20% will be for new technology, 60% for technology upgrades and 20% for improved comfort, with new design, functions and services on board.
The upgraded trains will be available at least a year earlier than if SJ had replaced the current train sets with new ones. The costs of new trains would have also been around 40% higher.
The Swedish Transport Administration estimates that passenger train travel in Sweden will continue to grow 2% annually until 2030. The entrance of new operators on intercity routes will increase the frequency of departures, which will entice more travellers to choose the train over cars or aeroplanes. In Sweden, rail passenger traffic has been fully opened up for competition since 2010.
Fulfilment of NIB's mandate
The upgrade of SJ’s rolling stock is likely to result in improved productivity and service quality. High-quality public transportation often provides numerous benefits, including reduced transportation costs, shorter travel times, higher security, and improved mobility for non-drivers and energy conservation. Making railway transport more attractive also indirectly contributes to greater competition within the passenger transport market.
Travelling by train is expected to keep increasing at an annual pace of about 2% in the next decade. For the X2000 trains operating on the link between Stockholm and Gothenburg/Malmö, the forecast is 5–6% annually for the period until 2017. The higher forecast is mostly attributed to the growing competition in the sector, which will ensure higher supply and prevent major price hikes.
The forecast increase in train travel is expected to happen at the expense of air transport and private driving. Travellers frequently indicate environmental concerns and comfort as the reasons for choosing train over air or car, with travel time being almost as important. SJ has a competitive advantage as fast trains produce a smaller negative environmental impact, are more comfortable and faster than any other means of transport on the routes the X2000 trains operate on. As a result of the modernisation programme, the capacity of the X2000 trains will increase by 13.5%, and their electricity consumption will decrease by 5%.
The implementation of the project is not expected to produce any significant negative environmental impact.