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Richard Bell

Engineering giants merge to create ‘champion’ of Europe’s rail industry

Two engineering giants across the Channel have announced plans to merge rail operations.

France-based Alstom and German firm Siemens are coming together to create Siemens Alstom, a new “champion” for the European rail industry.

Both companies make inter-city trains – Siemens the ICE model and Alstom the TGV.

Discussing the deal in a joint statement, the firms said their rail businesses were “largely complementary”. Joining forces, they said, will enable them to give customers access to a “larger geographic footprint”.

Joe Kaeser, chief executive of Siemens, said: “This Franco-German merger of equals sends a strong signal in many ways.

“We put the European idea to work and together with our friends at Alstom, we are creating a new European champion in the rail industry for the long term.”

Outside Europe, Alstom operates across the Middle East, India, Africa and Middle and South America. Siemens has a presence the US, China and Russia.

Moving forward as one company is expected to help Siemens Alstom compete with CRRC, the Chinese state-backed rail operator.

Speaking further, Mr Kaeser said: “The global marketplace has changed significantly over the last few years.

“A dominant player in Asia has changed global market dynamics and digitalisation will impact the future of mobility.”

Siemens Alstom will be headquartered in Paris and led by Alstom CEO Henri Poupart-Lafarge.

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