Together with a number of UIC experts, UIC Director General François Davenne held a number of meetings in April with Stefano Pierini, FS Group, Chair of the UIC Finance Platform.
The topics for discussion included sustainable finance and the related work underway, led by Lucie Anderton, Manager of the UIC Sustainable Development Unit. Discussion focused on the SDG Rail Index, a benchmarking and data tool to enable members to demonstrate sustainable credentials and thus have better access to sustainable finance products such as green bonds. The index is currently being developed, and members are now welcome to test the beta online reporting tool.
Sustainable procurement was also discussed, with the ERPC working group being relaunched on 6 May. A further item on the agenda was a Memorandum of Understanding with the World Bank and regional investment and development banks, as well as potential future work: the UIC Taxation Working Group is currently examining carbon taxation. Participants noted the working group’s expertise and UIC’s capacity to promote lobbying and green bond financing and enhance the standardisation process.
Further topics included discussions with Marc Guigon, UIC Passenger Director and Covid-19 Taskforce Coordinator, on financial support in the railway sector for recovery from the Covid-19 crisis. Mr Guigon explained the UIC Covid-19 taskforce, impacts on costs, the revenue crisis (passenger and freight) and economic support measures. The participants examined potential actions and the possibility of supporting UIC members by helping them to launch the OSDM (Open Sales and Distribution Model), which aims to substantially simplify the booking process for public transport customers and lower complexity and distribution costs for distributors and carriers. Participants also noted the possibility of further development of public-private partnerships at UIC, the current status of activities and potential development.
The Finance Platform plenary meeting will be held on 10 June.