North Sea – Baltic Corridor (RFC 8) connecting East and West launched


Prague, 10 November 2015 – After several months of intense preparatory activities, the North Sea – Baltic Rail Freight Corridor which connects the East and the West was launched on 10 November 2015

 Rail Freight Corridor North Sea – Baltic is a European project with the objective of boosting rail freight by providing a seamless and good quality path offer along the Corridor. As foreseen by Regulation (EU) 913/2010, the goal of Rail Freight Corridor North Sea – Baltic is to raise attractiveness and efficiency of rail freight compared to other modes of transport.

 Rail Freight Corridor North Sea – Baltic gathers together six Infrastructure Managers (Infrabel – Belgium, ProRail – The Netherlands, DB Netz AG – Germany , Správa železniční dopravní cesty (Railway Infrastructure Administration) – The Czech Republic, PKP Polskie Linie Kolejowe S.A. - Poland, AB “Lietuvos geležinkeliai” - Lithuania) and the Lithuanian Allocation Body (Valstybinė Geležinkelio Inspekcija prie Susisiekimo Ministerijos) cooperating as the Management Board, as well as six Ministries in charge of Transport from these countries cooperating as the Executive Board of the Corridor.

Together with eight other corridors, RFC 8 is part of the European freight railway network. It includes more than 6,000 km of railway lines and connects the most important North Sea ports with Central Europe and Baltic countries. It runs through six EU Member States: starting in the North Sea ports of Wilhelmshaven, Bremerhaven, Hamburg and Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Antwerp and spreading in central Germany through Aachen – Hannover/Berlin – Warsaw – Terespol (Poland-Belarus border) / Kaunas / Falkenberg – Prague / Wrocław – Katowice.

Rail Freight Corridor North Sea – Baltic consists approximately of 3,300 km of principal lines, 2,400 km of diversionary lines and 400 km of connecting lines. More than 170 terminals and 6 sea ports belong to it. It is intended also to gradually extend Rail Freight Corridor North Sea – Baltic by 2020 to Estonia, Latvia and towards the Poland – Ukraine border.

The Corridor One-Stop-Shop (C-OSS) of Rail Freight Corridor North Sea – Baltic is a single contact point for international rail freight transport where customers can address requests and receive answers concerning capacity for international freight trains along the Corridor..

The C-OSS offers the following products of Rail Freight Corridor North Sea – Baltic: Pre-arranged Paths for the annual timetable and reserve capacity for the ad-hoc traffic. In practice it means that a customer will be able to order for instance a path from Rotterdam to Prague using the Path Coordination System (PCS) IT tool of RailNetEurope (RNE) at this single contact point, the C-OSS.

The first offer of Rail Freight Corridor North Sea – Baltic including reserve capacity for the Timetable 2016 was published on 10 November 2015 in PCS. The catalogue including the Pre-arranged Paths offer will be published at the latest on 11 January 2016 for the Timetable 2017.

The Management Board of RFC 8 established two Advisory Groups – for railway undertakings (RAG) and managers and owners of terminals and port authorities (TAG)) – as a platform to facilitate the exchange of information, submitting recommendations and mutual understanding on a non-discriminatory basis. Launching the corridor means also a facilitation of the information flow regarding coordination of infrastructure works which improves the quality of service for customers.

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