New rules aim to make rail travel more attractive by creating more competition and a common certification scheme for trains. MEPs will debate the proposals on Tuesday 25 February from 15.00 CET and vote on them the following day. Learn more about railway traffic in our video and follow the debate live on our website.
Europe’s rail network remains fragmented along national lines and largely dominated by integrated rail companies that operate both the network and the trains running on it. This can make it difficult for new operators to enter the market.
The fourth railway legislative package intends to put an end to this by insisting on a greater separation between rail network management as well as the transport part of the business. In addition any operator should be able to enter the domestic rail market. These plans are currently being scrutinised by Parliament.
The new rules would also establish faster EU–wide certification for railway cars and locomotives, saving operators time and money and which should lead to lower ticket prices for passengers.
In December 2013, the EP’s transport committee approved the package. Before it can enter into force, both MEPs and the Council must approve the rules.