UIC attended the RailNetEurope Business Conference at the Palais Ferstel in Vienna on 5 December. The event was also the occasion for RNE to celebrate its 10th anniversary.
Under the heading “Cooperation and Team Work… makes the dream work”, Harald Hotz, RailNetEurope President, welcomed guests and introduced rail freight corridors as the core theme of the conference.
He reminded participants that the European EC regulation 913/2010 concerning a European rail network for competitive freight established nine corridors, of which six were officially grounded on 10 November. All nine corridors were actually represented at the conference and benefited from a dedicated exhibition area.
RNE representatives proceeded with a presentation of the association’s achievements over the past 10 years and took that opportunity to thank UIC for its cooperation.
Key to the successful development of corridors are the IT tools developed by RailNetEurope. With these tools (PCS, TIS and CIS), RNE wants to support fast and easy access to the European rail infrastructure and increase the quality and efficiency of international rail traffic through standardised and harmonised processes.
A harmonised approach to freight corridors is an issue of utmost importance for rail freight undertakings as was explained by Jürgen Maier-Gyomlay, BLS-BLSC. He reiterated that the overall objective of the rail freight corridors is to increase rail freight’s market share of European freight transport by providing a network with conditions of use to allow freight trains to run reliably and seamlessly across borders. He went on to explain that as rail freight undertakings typically operate on more than one corridor, it is important to them that operational and administrative rules are as consistent as possible across all corridors in order to promote rather than impede interoperability. Railway Undertakings, with the support of UIC, are therefore developing a number of “Uniform Requirements” towards infrastructure managers to take into account the paramount need to enhance interoperability and seamlessness.