The UK Government has formed a new rail industry supply chain forum to bring together the Department for Transport (DfT), the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS) and industry stakeholders, to develop a strategy to enhance the country's rail industry.
The new forum will encourage the expansion of small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) across the rail industry, as well as assisting the government in building and understanding supply chain capability.
The forum will also help the UK Government, execute projects such as Crossrail and the HS2 project.
"These new faster trains will help stimulate economic growth by improving connections between our major cities."
Intercity Express Programme (IEP) trains will start operating to Wales and the south west by 2017, and along the east coast a year later.
UK Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin said: "They will slash journey times, boost capacity to many of our cities in the south-west and up the east coast to Scotland."
"Like our plans for a national high-speed rail network, these new faster trains will help stimulate economic growth by improving connections between our major cities."
Image: Intercity Express Programme (IEP) trains will start operating to Wales and the south-west by 2017. Photo: courtesy of Gov.UK