European Context

Adoption of the Regulation (EU) 913/2010 not only provided legal framework for development of the Rail Freight Corridors (RFCs), but also sent a clear message to the railway sector that European Commission wants to express its strong commitment to promotion of the competitiveness of international rail freight in order to achieve a greater share in transport market.

For the last few years since the network of all nine RFCs became operational good results and developments have been observed, in particular in establishment of cooperation pattern within RFCs governance bodies and in identification of project stakeholders needs and expectations.

Another milestone in RFCs activities resulting from close cooperation between Corridors’ Executive Boards was the adoption of a harmonized Framework for Capacity Allocation, which is common to all corridors. This Framework ensured that allocation of capacity will take into account the needs of passenger and freight traffic. To a large extent the success of the rail freight corridor concept depends on finding common grounds between the stakeholders and further facilitating of international rail freight through a market oriented approach. Railway undertakings and terminals are strongly encouraged to get involved in the governance of the RFCs through advisory groups, which were established by the Management Boards for each corridor. Although governments may seem to play a crucial role in promoting the modal shift to rail, a substantial part of the success of the RFCs' project lies in the hands of the railway sector itself.

Below listed specific actions need to be undertaken in order to support the development of international rail freight transport through the implementation of the rail freight corridor concept.

  • Making a rail freight a more attractive alternative,
  • Making the governance of the Rail Freight Corridors more efficient,
  • Enhancing operational efficiency,
  • Ensuring adequate capacity for all users.