Under the chairmanship of Clemens Först, CEO of Rail Cargo Group (Austria), the UIC Freight Forum convened at UIC Headquarters on 15 May 2019.
Paving the way for the ambitious target “30 by 2030” is the major challenge the Forum members currently have to face: achieving 30% market share for rail freight in Europe until 2030. “The forecast growth of transport until 2030 cannot rely on road alone”, acknowledged Clemens Först. Therefore, the UIC Work Programme for the coming years was designed to rigorously focus on activities that will contribute to this objective. It was unanimously approved and contains activities aiming at
- the harmonisation of operational processes when crossing national borders,
- an effective contingency management,
- achieving the digitalisation of rail freight in its many facets (e.g. “intelligent” wagons, electronic consignment notes…).
An important step to underpin the work ahead towards the harmonisation of operational processes was the nomination of a new chairman for the Operations Study Group. Mr Sven Seligmann, DB Cargo, was unanimously elected to this position. “We need experienced experts with a keen sense of international practice in such important working bodies, and thus we are very happy to welcome Sven in our Community”, said the Freight Forum chairman.
Contingency management in railway business includes the challenge of bringing the infrastructure managers’ (IM) perspective in line with that of railway undertakings (RU). The Freight Forum endorsed the initiative of proposing an RU Handbook to complement the IM Handbook.
The “Digital Roadmap” identified six topics to put focus on:
- Rolling Stock Data Exchange
- eWag/Intelligent Wagon
- Estimated Time of Arrival
- Electronic Consignment Note
- Train Composition Message
- Unique Location Coding
All in all, the Freight Forum created a sound basis for being able to respond to the expectations of the CER/UIC High-Level Freight Meeting, which took place the following day at UIC Headquarters.