Dutordoir six more years as boss of Belgian railways

As expected, the council of ministers has extended the mandate of railway boss Sophie Dutordoir. Sophie Dutordoir, who has been CEO of NMBS/SNCB since 2017, gets six more years.

In a comment, she promises to dedicate herself “with the same enthusiasm and commitment” in the coming years to realize the public service contract between the government and the NMBS/SNCB.

Undeniable role

“Dutordoir seems the right person to lead NMBS/SNCB to new horizons, prioritizing modal shift and the government’s ambitions to make rail the backbone of mobility,” Mobility Minister Georges Gilkinet (Ecolo) said in a communication.

The minister further points out that during the various crises in recent years, such as the corona pandemic and the energy crises, NMBS/SNCB has shown resilience and maintained good service. “Mrs. Dutordoir’s role in this is undeniable,” Gilkinet said, praising, among other things, the ability of NMBS/SNCB and its top woman “to project the railway company into the future and prepare it for the government’s rail ambitions.”

Toward 300 million passengers by 2032

In a reaction, Sophie Dutordoir referred to the public service contract concluded late last year between the government and NMBS/SNCB. That contains essential objectives for the next ten years, including growth, service to passengers, and debt reduction.

“I thank Minister Gilkinet and the complete government for their confidence and, with the same enthusiasm and commitment to the NMBS/SNCB colleagues, board of directors, and the government in good governance, I will now effectively implement those ambitions step by step together with the 17 0000 NMBS/SNCB colleagues at the service of passengers.”

For her position as CEO, Dutordoir will receive a fixed salary of 230 000 euros and, in principle, a bonus of up to 60 000 euros gross.

In 2022, NMBS/SNCB transported 227 million passengers. According to the new management agreement, 30% should be added by 2032. NMBS/SNCB  recently raised fares by 10%. A third of the railway company’s revenue, or 800 million euros annually, comes from ticket sales. So the price increase will generate around 80 million euros of additional income.

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