5 Feb 2010 13:42

RZD lowers net profit by 86% in 2009

SOCHI. Feb 5 (Interfax) - OJSC Russian Railways' net profit in 2009 came to 11 billion rubles, an 85.5% decrease from 76.4 billion rubles in net profit posted for 2008, the company's president, Vladimir Yakunin, told Interfax.

"We can today say that the company has overcome a difficult 2009. We finished the year with profit at 11 billion rubles. This allows us to maintain the international ratings, which help raise funds and develop our investment program, as well as operations," Yakunin said.

Yakunin said that total freight hauling decreased by 15% in 2009, an improvement from a forecast decrease of 19%. "This was possible thanks to a concentrating efforts and state support," Yakunin said.

In 2009, the state allocated RZD 50 billion rubles in tariff compensation. "This really helped us. The state recognized that putting it below the set level compensated for these costs," Yakunin said.

The company reduced its operational expenditures in 2009 by 196 billion rubles. "We cut down our own expenses by 196 billion rubles. We promised 170.6 billion rubles but lowered it by 196 billion rubles. This included 32 billion rubles in wage cuts," Yakunin said.

The decrease in employee pay was implemented according to an agreement with the company's administrative departments and its labor groups. The wage cut helped the company avoid massive layoffs. "The decrease reached 39,000 persons, of whom 2,000 were for violations in labor regulations," he added.