To ask the Secretary of State for Transport
(1) what recent discussions her Department has had with train operating companies on the introduction of smartcard ticketing; and if she will make a statement;
(2) what cost-benefit analysis her Department has undertaken into smartcard ticketing across the rail network.
The Department for Transport, Transport for London and train operators are working together on the acceptance of Oyster Pay as You Go on rail services in the London Travelcard Zones and the acceptance of ITSO Smartcards on Oyster equipment. Commercial and contractual negotiations are taking place.
The introduction of ITSO smartcards has been mandated in the most recently let franchises—South Western, West Midlands, East Midlands and Intercity East Coast, with the New Cross Country Franchise accepting smartcard tickets issued by other operators.
The costs and benefits of these smartcard schemes have been demonstrated in the confidential bidding process for these franchises.