The 5th edition of the World Congress on Rail Training jointly organised by UIC in partnership with ONCF, IFF (Institut de Formation Ferroviaire – the Railway Training Institute), EMI (Ecole Mohammadia d’Ingénieurs), SNCF and FS opened on 9 October at the IFF, Institut de Formation Ferroviaire in Rabat, Morocco. The Congress brings together over 230 participants from 30 different countries from Asia-Pacific, Europe, Middle East and Africa.
Organised at the initiative of the UIC Expertise Development Platform, which draws its expertise from the regional Rail Training Centres Networks, the congress’ main purpose is to enhance workforce development through sharing best practice in rail training across the entire industry.
Among high-level representatives opening the congress, Mr Abdelkader Amara, Morocco’s Transport Minister highlighted the importance of the railway sector in Morocco in order to become one of the 20 best railways of the world. Mr Mohamed Rabie Khlie, ONCF Director General and Chairman of the UIC African Region, spoke about the efficiency and the efficacity of the trainings in Morocco’s railways.
Mr Gianluigi Vittorio Castelli, UIC Chairman (FS) highlighted as keynote speaker the importance of the new technologies in the last few years and how important it has become to keep learning throughout one’s professional life. Mr Moulay Larbi Abidi, EMI Director said that railway training is the priority of his university. Mr Karim Eddine Chennouf, Chairman of the management board, IFF and Mr Christophe Martin General Manager of IFF welcomed the participants to their training facility. Mr François Davenne, UIC Director General (through a video message) spoke about the rapidly changing situation having an impact on the professions and competences which call for a drastic change in our traditional learning culture.
Mrs Nathalie Amirault, Head of the UIC Talent and Expertise Development Unit, presented the latest developments of the Talent and Expertise Development Platform (TEDP) and gave another view of its activities.
Mrs Ester Marconi, chairwomen of the TEDP, introduced the group of international young talents. They are working on special assignments to define an international programme for young talents. The result of their work will be given on the last day of the congress.
The WCRT congress is also an opportunity:
- to kick off the TrainRail (International rail education & training board) project;
- to present the results of the TEDP “Future of Work and Training project” and officially launch a permanent observatory on these issues;
- to highlight for the first time a team of young talents;
- to exchange on topical issues such as discussing innovation and challenging mindsets, research and development, international cooperation, knowledge transfer, skills development, digitalisation, safety and security.
Technical visits were also organised, including to the IFF office with access to the driving simulator and SIGMARAIL Project’s VR room and the high-speed train “Al Boraq”, linking Tangier to Rabat.