Conservative MP Andrew Jones has been named as the new minister in charge of rail, replacing Jo Johnson who resigned last week over Brexit.
Jones, who is MP for Harrogate and Knaresborough, was previously exchequer secretary to HM Treasury, and served as Parliamentary under secretary of state at the Department for Transport (DfT) from May 2015 to June 2017.
Railway Industry Association (RIA) chief executive Darren Caplan said: “It is an exciting time to join rail, a sector that contributes more than £36 billion to the economy, employs some 600,000 people and generates around £11 billion in tax revenue a year. With a new Control Period beginning in April and a number of major projects on the horizon, including Crossrail, HS2, the Trans Pennine Route Upgrade, Northern Powerhouse Rail, Crossrail 2 and East West Rail, there are a number of opportunities for rail businesses on the horizon.
“However, the industry still faces the challenges of ‘boom and bust’ rail funding, keeping electrification an option as we seek to decarbonise the network and preparing for a changing international regulatory and trade landscape as the UK prepares to leave EU.”
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