Rail freight in Europe : how to improve capacity and usage of the network?
Title: Rail freight in Europe : how to improve capacity and usage of the network?
Series/Number: Florence School of Regulation; Transport; 2015/02; European transport regulation observer
There is a shared vision across Europe to develop a rail freight system that is capable of significantly shifting freight traffic from road to rail. The 10th Florence Rail Forum was an opportunity to take stock of achievements and remaining challenges on the way to that goal. The central focus lay on the most crucial initiative in the area of rail freight infrastructure: the Rail Freight Corridors. Their aim is to eventually establish a network of fully interoperable corridors that allow seamless cross border freight transport throughout Europe. Discussions at the Forum addressed several challenges among others technical barriers to interoperability, diverging standards and safety requirements, language requirements for train drivers and the conflicting issue of network access priorities. The 10th Florence Rail Forum underlined the importance of a European dialogue and closer cooperation to achieve what is shared among all actors in the rail freight business. Against the background of growing traffic volumes and strong competition from the road sector, the European rail freight sector has no choice but to push these processes forward.
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