Analysis: Fehmarn connection will be a huge win.(Flensburg newspaper)

Visualization of a completed Fehmarnbelt connection in Rødbyhavn.

Visualization of a completed Fehmarnbelt connection in Rødbyhavn.(Fehmarn Image)

The report believes that the planned tunnel under the Fehmarnbelt will have earned its home in 2059 and, in general, be a very good investment.
In both Danish and German media there are ongoing voices, which emphasize that the planned fixed link across the Fehmarnbelt is a bad investment, and it is pointed out that there will be a “colossus of clay feet” that might even go bankrupt time after the planned opening in 2028.

This is a completely different result, the Danish Industry Analysis Company, in a report on the connection. It has been made by the company without a contracting entity and is therefore not affected by equity interests.

“There will be profound economic and social benefits by establishing a fixed link,” said the report, which was written by Ole Egholm.

He finds that the investment of about 60 billion dollars will be earned in 2059 if you expect the construction to be completed by 2028. However, if you look at the social perspective, the investment will already be home again six years after opening.

– There will be significantly more travelers across the Fehmarnbelt link than the current forecasts show when Ole Egholm arrives. He has noticed that even the company behind the fixed line operates with fairly low traffic volumes.

He basically bases his speech on how it has been done with the fixed connections across the Great Belt and Øresund, as he points out that it is currently very expensive to come by ferry across the Fehmarnbelt.

– There will be some kind of ketchup effect with the fixed connection, he writes and expects that ten years after the opening of the connection there will be seven million vehicles that use it annually – towards two million with the ferries today.

The seven million vehicles after ten years are significantly more than the Femerbelt company itself expects. Here you operate with 5.3 million vehicles after 25 years of opening. And even with these numbers it will be profitable to establish the connection.

Traffic volumes are falling

The traffic with the ferries has – in contrast to the Great Belt and Øresund – in recent years had a downward trend, and it certainly depends on the price level.

It costs about 240 kroner to get over the Great Belt, about 410 kroner to come across the Øresund – but it costs 849 kroner to come by ferry across the Fehmarnbelt. These are prices without different discount schemes.

“The ferries from Scandlines are priced below the limit of pain to drive outside the Fehmarnbelt,” points out Ole Egholm.

As part of the Finance Act negotiations between the Danish government and the Danish People’s Party, price reductions have been proposed on the Great Belt. In the future, it is supposed to cost NOK 193.80 to drive a passenger car across the bridge between Fyn and Jutland.

Ole Egholm believes that traffic over the belt is actually traffic jamed. Looking back to the period 1990-1996, traffic across the Baltic Sea to and from Germany was then more than half of traffic over the Great Belt.

“We therefore expect that the same size ratios in traffic should at least occur when the Fehmarnbelt link has existed for a number of years,” the report says.

Both the Greater Belt and the Sound have experienced an almost explosive increase in traffic since the fixed connections became a reality.

Back in 1997 there were three million vehicles that were transported each year with the ferries across the Great Belt. Last year there were 12.4 million who used the fixed link.

Over the year 1999, 311,000 vehicles were crossed by ferries – in 1999, 7.4 million used the fixed link last year.

“The experiences from the Great Belt and the Sound show a growth of at least three times the original traffic when a fixed connection has existed for ten years,” writes Ole Egholm.

He estimates that it will cost about 300 kroner per year. vehicle to use the new connection – and he does not involve the train traffic at all, which will also give a significant revenue.

At the same time, he does not believe that Scandlines will continue to sail when the new connection has been established. This is also reflected in the company’s annual report.

“We can not take such a claim seriously, according to the report, which points out that the ferries across the Great Belt and between Copenhagen and Malmö stopped at the same moment, the fixed connections were a reality.

– Should it finally be the case that they will actually sail after a fixed connection has arrived, our assessment is that they will close such a thundering deficit business after a few months, it is stated.

Scandlines has also pointed out that there is currently a lot of traffic with border dealers, and the report believes that a new fixed connection will certainly have special prices for single-haulers and commuters. It is also today over the Great Belt and Øresund.

Surplus compounds

The report suggests that the Great Belt Association last year gave a surplus of 1.3 billion, and over Øresund the same figure was 809 million. Both connections have made profits since 2012.

“Both companies have been exceptionally good business,” says Ole Egholm, who points out that this has been the case, although none of the companies are aiming at price maxims – but, on the other hand, want to serve the community.

– Should the Danish society be so keen to sell the Øresund Link or the Øresund Consortium to private investors, Denmark would probably earn a three-digit billion amount, according to the report.

However, it is also pointed out that in that case it would end with the community mind and that prices would surely rise to something at 849 kroner, which would definitely be detrimental to Denmark.

“We are therefore convinced that, from an investment point of view, it will be possible to build the Fehmarnbelt link,” said the report.

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