France to restart Paris airport express rail line scheme: Source

PARIS (REUTERS) - France's transport ministry will unveil new plans on Thursday for an express rail service between Paris and Charles de Gaulle airport after several years of delays, a source close to the ministry said.

The so-called "CGD Express" line, conceived in 2000, was stalled because of strained government finances after construction group Vinci pulled out in 2011.

Weekly newspaper La Tribune's website reported on Tuesday that Transport Minister Frederic Cuvillier would announce that a state partnership had been given the task of putting in place the necessary funding.

"The minister will announce the resumption of the CGD project on Thursday," the source close to the ministry told Reuters, adding that the ministry had long discussed the possibility of a public-public partnership.

Charles de Gaulle, the biggest airport in France, situated in the north of the capital, is now served by the RER rapid commuter rail network operating in Paris and its suburbs, which is increasingly congested. Another busy airport, Orly, is to the south of Paris.

Last year Cuvillier said that the 1.7 billion euro (S$2.9 billion) project may be partially funded from new taxes on airline tickets that would raise 400 million euros.

The project's infrastructure works are expected to be carried out by airport operator Aeroports de Paris and the French national railway network RFF before being handed to rail operators such as RATP or SNCF.

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