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Business

Deutsche Bahn to Cut Service Personnel

Germany's national railway operator Deutsche Bahn will trim 3,000 employees from its payroll by 2005, the Tagesspiegel paper reported. Train attendants and ticket desk personnel will bear the brunt of the cuts, the Berlin daily said, referring to an internal paper from DB which called for cuts in long-distance service. Apparently, the company will expect passengers to make greater use of the Internet and automated ticket machines in stations. Railway employee union Transnet and Pro Bahn, a consumer group acting on behalf of train travelers, have said the plans are bad for consumers. The company came under fire earlier this year after introducing a complicated new pricing system that it finally agreed to alter after months of customer complaints. Deutsche Bahn has not yet commented on the planned job cuts, which were first revealed on Sunday. The railway operator is preparing to go public by 2005 and has already said it will pare down the company for an initial public offering.