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European freights corridors

One of the core goals of the European transport policy is redirecting flows of goods from the roads to the railway network. Opening the railway cargo transport has allowed new carriers to enter the railway network, however it has been shown that these mechanisms do not suffice for optimum use of the railway infrastructure. In order to optimize its use and ensure its reliability additional measures for strengthening cooperation between infrastructure administrators in the allocation of international train paths for freight trains.

The Regulation (EU) no. 913/2010 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 22 September 2010 concerning a European rail network for competitive freight calls for ensuring good coordination between member states and the infrastructure administrators, thereby establishing favourable conditions for the development of competition between service providers in the railway freight transport. For this purpose nine basic European rail freight corridors were established, two of which cross Slovenian territory:

  • The Baltic-Adriatic freight corridor (RFC 5) on the relation Swinoujšcie-Gdynia-Katovice-Ostrava/Žilina-Bratislava/Vienna/Klagenfurt-Udine-Venice/Trieste/Bologna/Ravena and Graz-Maribor-Ljubljana-Koper/Trieste was established on 10 November 2015;
  • The Mediterranean freight corridor (RFC 6) on the relation Almeria-Valencia/Madrid-Zaragoza/Barcelona-Marseille-Lyon-Torino-Milano-Verona-Padova/Venice-Trieste/Koper-Ljubljana-Budapest-Zahony (Hungary-Ukraine border) was established on 10 November 2013 Three years after it was established, on 10 November 2016, the corridor was extended to include Ljubljana/Rijeka-Zagreb-Budapest.

In 2020 three additional European freight corridors will be established, of which two will run across Slovenian territory:

  • The Alpine-Western Balkans freight corridor (RFC 10) on the relation Salzburg-Villach-Ljubljana/Wels/Linz-Graz-Maribor-Zagreb-Vinkovci/Vukovar-Tovarnik-Belgrade-Sofia-Svilengrad (Bulgaria-Turkey border);
  • Amber freightcorridor (RFC 11) on the relation Koper-Ljubljana-Zalaszentiván-Sopron/Csorna (Hungary-Serbia border)-Kelebia-Budapest/Komárom-Leopoldov/Rajka-Bratislava-Žilina-Katowice/Krakov-Warsaw/Łuków-Terespol (Poland-Belarus border).

Regulatory bodies play an important role in providing free competition on freight corridors. Regulatory bodies especially ensure equal access to freight corridors for all applicants, and they are a complaints authority in cases of discriminatory actions on the part of individual infrastructure administrators (Corridor-One-stop-shop) who have the authority for allocating infrastructure capabilities on individual corridors.

For this purpose the regulatory bodies of member states along which the Baltic-Adriatic freight corridor and the Mediterranean freight corridor run have signed Agreements on cooperation along these two corridors.

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