Germany’s Deutsche Bahn (DB) has signed an agreement to offer business and technical consulting and support to Ukrainian railways, JSC Ukrzaliznytsia (UZ).

DB signed the agreement with Ukraine’s Ministry of Infrastructure.

The agreement outlines plans to modernise the railway network in Ukraine in the coming years.

The partnership covers the analysis and reorganisation of different business areas, along with optimising operations and management.

UZ manages 27,000km of rail track and employs around 250,000 people. It is among the most important railways in Eastern Europe.

DB Engineering & Consulting (DB E&C) will fulfil the agreement on behalf of DB.

The specialists from DB E&C will carry out analysis of the rail situation in Ukraine and develop a milestone plan.

The firm will provide management staff with experience in the field. It will also offer its counsel on the restructuring process.

Ukranian Prime Minister Oleksiy Honcharuk said: “I am happy to announce that our cooperation with Deutsche Bahn has gained ground.

“As a result of negotiations, we came to an understanding on the format of our joint work, that would allow us to keep full control over Ukrzaliznytsia, yet involve German specialists to take the company to a whole new European level of railway transportation.

“I count on German zero tolerance to corruption that would help us to change the status quo at Ukrzaliznytsia. Eventually, we expect a result that would be notable not just in terms of financial results of UZ, but also in terms of comfort of every client of the company.”

In September, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) announced a plan to invest up to $100m in bonds issued by Ukraine Railways.