Transport policy as financial policy

28 May 1995
Scrutinising the numbers
Scrutinising the numbers

In 1995, Federal Councillor Otto Stich rejects the Lötschberg Tunnel, arguing that Switzerland cannot afford two base lines through the Alps. (1993, Keystone)

In 1995 finance minister Otto Stich tells his colleagues that the costs of the NRLA will be higher than the estimated 14 billion francs. Funding it will require measures including a heavy vehicle fee. He also criticises the network option, arguing that the promised extra capacity will be impossible to exploit without an additional tunnel through the Jura. The Department of Transport, Communications and Energy points to an expert appraisal by the British consulting firm Coopers & Lybrand, which concludes that goods transport capacity would increase markedly.

« In terms of transport policy, the current construction programme makes little sense. »

Federal Councillor Otto Stich, Deliberations on the relationships between transport policy and financial policy, 29.05.1995
2 Federal Councillors

with 2 positions: Adolf Ogi in favour of the benefits in terms of transport, regional and European policy, Otto Stich sceptical about the cost, sometimes to the point of tears in parliament.

50 per cent

of the extra capacity due to the NRLA unusable without a third tunnel through the Jura, according to Finance Minister Otto Stich, who believes that the project for two base tunnels is overambitious.

14 bn Swiss francs

the estimated cost (based on 1991 prices) that Otto Stich expects to be exceeded; history proves him right.

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