German industry giant Siemens and French rival Alstom agreed to merge their rail divisions. The move is intended to ward off growing competition by China's rail giant CRRC.
The German and French rivals have inked a deal to merge their rail operations, but antitrust authorities still need to approve tie-up. Siemens said the new firm will be headquartered in France.
Demonstrations have turned violent in France as people protest against reforms to labor laws. President Emmanuel Macron is overhauling the state-owned railway network to rein in massive debt accumulated by the company.
Canadian-owned train and railway manufacturer Bombardier has agreed not to shut down any factories in Germany, but job losses are unavoidable. The firm aims to become more competitive in a tough market environment.
Train travel in France has been disrupted for a third time this month as SNCF workers protest against a planned overhaul. The strikes pose the biggest challenge so far to President Emmanuel Macron's reform plans.
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