Co-financing projects from EU
RIA and EU funds
The Railway Infrastructure Administration, state organisation (RIA) was established on 1. 1. 2003 following Act 77/2002 Coll. as the successor organisation to Czech Railways, state organisation. Based on this Act RIA manages the railway infrastructure owned by the Czech Republic (CR), i.e. it performs mainly the following duties: 1) modernisation and development of the railway infrastructure, 2) operation of the railway infrastructure, and 3) operability of the railway infrastructure. In order to carry out the above activities RIA makes use of available EU funds. In its role as end recipient and simultaneously as the investor RIA is the only entity in the CR responsible for utilising EU funds for railway infrastructure projects. RIA, as the successor organisation to Czech Railways, state organisation, took over the roles of management, coordination and implementation in projects co-financed from EC funds.
Up until 2002 the pre-accession funds Phare and Phare CBC were utilised for modernisation of the railway network. Czech Railways, state organisation was the end recipient of this support. In the period from 2003-2004 RIA continued in carrying out large railway projects of international significance co-financed from the ISPA pre-accession financial instrument previously commenced by Czech Railways, state organisation, and also commenced new projects. Following the Czech Republic’s accession to the European Union it continued co-financing these projects from the Cohesion fund.
Accession to the EU enabled RIA between 2004-2006 to also make use of grant funding from ERDF (European Regional Development Fund) for modernisation of the track network of national and European importance and also from Programme TEN – T, which is designated for the development of the trans-European transport network (TEN-T). RIA is utilising the TEN-T programme largely for co-financing studies (project documentation, construction projects).
In the new programme period 2007 - 2013 RIA plans on utilising the newly established Operation Programme Transport for financing projects and will continue to use the TEN - T programme.
RIA also plans during the period 2007 – 2013 to use funds from ERDF. In 2009 RIA, in cooperation with DSDiK, was successful in obtaining funding for carrying out the project “Revitalisation of the Szklarska Poręba – Harrachov railway track” from the Operation programme for cross-border cooperation Czech Republic - Poland 2007—2013.
EU funds in general
EU funds represent the main instrument for realisation of the European policy for economic and social cohesion. It is through these funds that financial resources determined for lowering economic and social differences are divided amongst member states and their regions.
The European Union offers the following three main funds:
- European Regional Development Fund (ERDF)
- Cohesion Fund (CF)
The Cohesion Fund and the European Regional Development Fund can be utilised for development of any railway infrastructure within the EU.
Cohesion Fund 2007 - 2013
The CF is determined for supporting poorer EU states (not regions) and in the 2007 – 2013 programming period it will help 12 new Mediterranean and Central European member states and also older EU members, namely Greece, Portugal and Spain.
As part of the Cohesion Fund it is possible in the Czech Republic during the period 2007 – 2013 to draw from the Operational Programme Transport, to which 5.77 billion EUR has been allocated. Railway infrastructure projects financed from this programme are aimed primarily at modernisation, electrification, and rationalisation of railway networks and also for introducing interoperability on railways in the Czech Republic.
European Fund for Regional Development 2007 -2013
ERDF primarily finances investment projects and is designed for economically poorer regions. For railway infrastructure projects in the Czech Republic in the 2007 – 2013 period it is possible to draw from this fund from programmes for cross-border cooperation and from several regional operational programmes (ROP). As part of these programmes it is possible to draw funds for the restoration and reconstruction of border area tracks, modernisation or construction of railway stations, and building information systems for public transportation, etc..