BERLIN, June 18 (Reuters) - Angela Merkel’s conservatives have no plans to privatise Deutsche Bahn during Germany’s next legislative period, according to their election programme, preferring to keep the national rail operator’s units integrated and in state hands.
Merkel’s previous government had aimed to privatise part of Deutsche Bahn, which is Europe’s biggest rail operator, in 2008 but the plan was abandoned due to poor market conditions.
Germany holds a federal election on Sept. 22, with the next term running until 2017.
“We plan to stick to Deutsche Bahn’s successful integrated business model,” the Christian Democrats (CDU) and sister party the Christian Social Union (CSU) wrote.
The European Commission has been encouraging EU member states to separate networks from the rail companies, in order to encourage more competition.
Before the last election in 2009, the conservatives said they still aimed to privatise parts of the company if market conditions were favourable.
Reporting by Markus Wacket; Editing by Alison Williams