Tuesday 28 May 2013

TAP-TSI background

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The EU’s TAP TSI regulation (telematics applications for passenger services – technical specifications for interoperability) has been on the UIC’s agenda for several years. Following an extensive writing phase supported by the UIC, the TAP TSI entered into force two years ago as Commission Regulation (EU) No 454/2011.

Its purpose is to define procedures and interfaces between railway undertakings, infrastructure managers, third party ticket vendors and public authorities to provide, amongst others, timetable and tariff information and to issue tickets to passengers. The regulation requires, for instance, that railways make their timetable raw data broadly available in a given format and quality. To achieve its ends, the TAP TSI builds upon various pillars of the UIC legacy, notably the retail leaflets and the MERITS, PRIFIS and Passport databases.

The concept phase of TAP TSI implementation – the so-called Phase One project – was run by a project team of railway and third party ticket vendor representatives from May 2011 to May 2012. The project was administered by the UIC and funded by CER, EIM and DG MOVE. Following approval by the multi-stakeholder Steering Committee, co-chaired by Libor Lochman (CER) and Patrizio Grillo (DG MOVE), and following a positive recommendation by the European Railway Agency (ERA), the EU Commission has meanwhile accepted the Phase One deliverables.

Implementation development (Phase Two) continues to be run by the established Steering Committee and project team. It is administered by the UIC and funded by its members. In addition, a TEN-T bid has been submitted in order to help co-fund the project. One of the key challenges in the ongoing project phase is to establish a sustainable long-term governance structure that respects the rights of non-railways and non-UIC members at large, whilst ensuring minimal additional costs for the UIC members to be compliant with the regulation. The project team, supported by a work group of UIC staff and member representatives, is currently assessing the options and opportunities for achieving this.

TAP TSI deployment and perpetual operations (Phase Three) are expected to begin approximately in the second half of 2014. There will be a series of articles in the upcoming e-News shedding some light on different aspects of the TAP TSI and its implications for the UIC members. Visit the project’s website at http://tap-tsi.uic.org/ for more information or contact the project leader Rütger: Fenkes ruetger.fenkes@deutschebahn.com.

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