Network Rail may sell off electric power assets

Coming hard on the heels of the news that the government may privatise Network Rail’s 18 managed stations, NR now says it is considering selling off its electric power assets as well.

A statement issued on  March 4th says it “will be assessing interest in its electrical power assets from potential global investors and electricity network operators.”

Publication of the full Shaw report is expected any day now and will precede the Chancellor’s Budget on the 16th (next Wednesday). Privatisation, full or partial of Network Rail, was one of many options Shaw’s previous scoping report had considered.

NR says about 42% of the network is already electrified; approximately two-thirds is 25KV AC overhead; the rest being 750V DC third rail. Ongoing electrification schemes will greatly increase the proportion.

Overhead electrification accounts for over 5,000 track miles
Overhead electrification accounts for over 5,000 track miles

NR hopes to raise £1.8bn from its property sales; it’s not known at this stage how much would be realised from disposing of electric power assets.


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