New Network Rail boss to get £675k a year

Waverley Rail station in Edinburgh. Picture: Ian Georgeson
Waverley Rail station in Edinburgh. Picture: Ian Georgeson
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THE new chief executive of Network Rail will start on a basic salary of almost £100,000 more than his predecessor.

The company, which has no shareholders, said former Shell executive Mark Carne, 54, would succeed Sir David Higgins and will take over on 1 April next year. Network Rail (NR) said Mr Carne, a father-of-three, would be on a basic annual salary of £675,000. This compares with Sir David’s figure of £577,000.

State-backed NR is the owner of most of the UK’s track and many of its biggest stations. It has faced constant criticism recently over train punctuality, with repeated warnings by rail regulators about its performance, particularly on long-distance routes.

NR said yesterday: “Mr Carne’s base salary of £675,000 was determined following an exhaustive and independent process which compared the salaries of chief executives in the public and private sectors given Network Rail’s unique position as a not-for-dividend, independent company.

“The review concluded the proposed salary reflected that unique status, placing, as it does, the chief executive’s salary at a point between the two sectors.”

It added: “Mr Carne will not take any potential annual incentive payment for 2013/14.”

Mr Carne was formerly executive vice-president for the Middle East and North Africa for Royal Dutch Shell. He also worked for natural gas company BG Group.

He will join NR on 6 January before taking over from Sir David next year.

Richard Parry Jones, chairman of NR, said: “Through his work with Shell and BG Group in very testing environments, Mark Carne has shown that he has the necessary skill and global experience to build on what Network Rail has already achieved.”