On behalf of Hungary, Slovenia, Slovakia and Poland, the Hungarian Ministry of National Development submitted to the European Commission a Letter of Intent for the establishment of a new Amber Rail Freight Corridor No. 11 with the aim to facilitate cross-border rail freight. The corridor links, inter alia, GYSEV’s intermodal terminal in Sopron with the Slovenian seaport of Koper, and with key terminals and industrial regions in Slovenia, Slovakia and Poland.
The Amber Rail Freight Corridor No. 11 is the first new EU Rail Freight Corridor to be established since the setting-up of the nine initial Rail Freight Corridors, which were defined in 2010 by EU Regulation 913/2010 concerning a European Rail Network for Competitive Freight.
The countries and railway infrastructure managers participating in the new corridor undertake to develop it as an integral part of the network of Rail Freight Corridors, to the benefit of freight train operators, rail logistics companies and shippers.
Regulation (EU) 913/2010 leaves room for expansion of the existing Rail Freight Corridors, meaning that the Amber corridor may be extended and enhanced by adding line extensions to further Member States in the future based on market demand and, of course, the mutual consent of the respective Member States.
The GYSEV rail network is at the heart of this corridor, which links, inter alia, GYSEV’s intermodal terminal in Sopron with the Slovenian seaport of Koper, and with key terminals and industrial regions in Slovenia, Slovakia and Poland.
GYSEV CEO Mr Kövesdi underscores that: “The Amber Rail Freight Corridor No. 11 has strategic value for us and will help GYSEV to strengthen its position on the North-South axis, which following investment to electrify the North-South line and ongoing and planned infrastructure upgrades on the GYSEV network, is becoming an increasingly attractive route for international North-South rail freight east of the Alps and for combined traffic services to and from our intermodal terminal in Sopron”.
On the East-West axis, GYSEV already participates in the Orient-East Med Rail Freight Corridor No. 7 and will also be part of the future Rhine-Danube Rail Freight Corridor No. 9. GYSEV Head of International Relations Ms Mosóczi explains: “Based on this experience, we have actively supported efforts to set up an EU Rail Freight Corridor on the North-South axis; with the signing of the Letter of Intent by the Ministries of all four Member States, we now see the fruits of our work and our excellent cooperation with the Ministry and European Commission experts.”
GYSEV Cargo CEO Mr János Skala adds: “As a freight train operator and customer of the Rail Freight Corridors, we are familiar with all the challenges and hurdles cross-border rail freight is facing today. We very much welcome the establishment of the Amber Rail Freight Corridor in order to tackle these issues, and see it as an important instrument to develop and implement smooth and harmonised solutions for the provision and management of international rail freight capacity”.
GYSEV Cargo Business Development Director Mr Péter Schöberl very much welcomes the initiative, since GYSEV Cargo is currently putting increasing emphasis on a project which aims to develop connectivity between Poland and the Adriatic ports of Slovenia and Northern Italy via the hub of Sopron. He is convinced that the establishment of the new Amber Rail Freight Corridor will help to strengthen the competitiveness of rail and help shift long-distance traffic from road to rail.