On 11 July, as part of the Greening Freight Package the European Commission published a proposal for a Regulation on the use of railway infrastructure capacity.
The draft regulation introduces a comprehensive set of rules for rail capacity management as well as traffic management and performance management. These provisions should replace the current stipulations on capacity management of Directive 2012/34/EU as well as the Rail Freight corridor Regulation, which is proposed to be repealed.
In addition, a new approach to operational cooperation between infrastructure managers at European-wide level is proposed in the form of additional tasks for the European network of rail infrastructure managers, which shall be supported by a network coordinator and complemented by national focal points.
The proposal defines a list of tasks on which rail infrastructure managers will have to cooperate; in particular, the European network of rail infrastructure managers will have to adopt European frameworks for capacity management, traffic management and performance management.
After a first examination of the draft Regulation, it can be concluded that the proposal builds to a good extent upon sector initiatives, including most notably the Timetable Redesign (TTR) programme, but also the virtual European traffic management network concept and the work on international contingency management conducted under the umbrella of RNE together with the Rail Freight Corridors. This clearly underlines the relevance of the activities performed by RNE, its Members and partners in designing processes and tools to facilitate cross-border rail traffic.
The proposed tasks of the European Network of Rail Infrastructure Managers and the Network Coordinator show a high degree of convergence with ongoing and upcoming activities performed at the level of RNE. RNE’s handbooks and guidelines in the field of capacity, traffic, incident and performance management can constitute a solid basis for preparing the European frameworks on capacity management, traffic management and performance management.
RNE appreciates being considered as a potential candidate to exercise the activities of the Network Coordinator and stands ready to step up to such a new role if being the organization of choice.
RNE will follow the upcoming negotiations in close cooperation with other sector organisations, including via existing common working structures in the TTR Programme, with RNE’s experts available to provide information and clarification on the sector-led initiatives which inspired the proposal.
In case of questions regarding the activities of RNE related to the proposed Regulation, feel free to reach out to email@example.com.