Activity start of European Rail Freight Corridor No 9 – Czech-Slovak Corridor (in short CS Corridor or RFC 9)

10.11.2013

RFC 9 Executive Board and Management Board representatives approved on 7 November 2013 in accordance with the Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council (EU) No 913/2010 from 22 September 2010 all documents necessary to start activity of RFC 9 as of 10 November 2013. The Executive Board of the Czech-Slovak corridor consists of representatives of the Ministries of Transport of the Czech and Slovak Republic; the Management Board consists of infrastructure managers from both countries: Správa železniční dopravní cesty, státní organizace (the Railway Infrastructure Administration, state organisation, in short SŽDC), and Železnice Slovenskej republiky (the Railways of the Slovak Republic, in short ŽSR). The corridor management consisting of both states’ representatives is based on close cooperation and equality principles.

In 2008 the European Commission proposed to introduce international rail freight transit corridors which create a European rail network for competitive freight railway transport where common conditions for freight train rides apply and trains thus pass from one national network to another without any organisational barriers. The main objective of the EU Regulation is increasing the share of the environment-friendly railway on the transport market and fulfilling the goals of European transport policy – transferring till 2030 the amount of 30 % of road transport volume to the railway for distances exceeding 300 km. The Regulation sets the procedure and conditions for establishing corridors including requirements on their technical standards on the whole pre-defined network. It is a rather complex freight transport tool having as objective to create infrastructure with homogenous key parameters for freight transport requirements. Technical aspects concern especially the structure gauge, axle load, length of train and of course speed, organisational aspects concern creating a single contact place for submitting requests for infrastructure capacity allocation (so-called Corridor One Stop Shop, in short C-OSS).

The European Union decreed on establishing 9 initial international rail freight corridors in total. RFC 9 is defined by the path Praha – Horní Lideč / Ostrava – Žilina – Košice – Čierna nad Tisou (alternatively Maťovce) – Slovak-Ukrainian border. This corridor links Central Europe with Eastern Europe and Asia which represents a potential for the future for increasing rail freight transport across both countries. It is also sometimes designated as the Czech-Slovak Corridor, in short CS Corridor or also  RFC 9.

Infrastructure Managers (in this case SŽDC and ŽSR) participating in freight corridors’ activity define and introduce together international pre-arranged corridor paths for freight trains. Applicants for train paths in the timetable period 2013/2014 will have at their disposal 12 pairs of pre-arranged corridor paths in total on the CS Corridor.

For elaborating tasks resulting from the above-mentioned Regulation, the Corridor Management Board established a Terminal Advisory Group and a Railway Undertakings Advisory Group. Thanks to their activity in these advisory groups, railway undertakings, terminal owners and operators can submit their suggestions for improving rail corridor activity leading to fulfilment of their expectations. Of the main effects to be expected we can name a strengthening of transit railway transport and providing services of better quality, especially shortening transport times and increasing rail freight transport reliability.

For exercising corridor activity, existing tools, information systems, experience and data of SŽDC and ŽSR should be used in the utmost amount possible. Both partners will alternate in carrying out the role of C-OSS. SŽDC will exercise this role for the first year.

 

More information on RFC 9 can be found on the corridor website www.rfc9.eu.

The basic map of the CS Corridor with the indication of lines, terminals of combined transport and marshalling yards along the corridor is at your disposal in the annex or on the corridor website www.rfc9.eu.


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