Transport Minister Stephen Hammond and shadow secretary Mary Creagh speak as the process of privatising the East Coast Mainline begins today.
Unions have objected strongly to the proposals and more than 23,000 people signed a petition against the plans.
The process of re-privatising the East Coast Mainline begins today.
Companies will be invited to bid for the franchise to run the train service, which is currently owned by the government.
Labour argues it should remain nationalised.