Infrabel, partner in a European network of freight corridors
Since 1 January 2007, domestic and international freight transport has been fully opened up to competition. In order to improve the service quality and efficiency of rail freight transport and to work towards sustainable mobility, the European Union has established nine initial international rail freight corridors (RFC). These are European freight axes that pass through multiple member states. It is essential that the European railway infrastructure managers for each corridor work closely together to ensure the smooth flow of goods.
Three freight corridors in Belgium
Regulation 913/2010 defined nine initial corridors, three of which run through Belgium:
- RFC Rhine-Alpine: Zeebrugge – Antwerp / Amsterdam / Rotterdam – Duisburg – Basel – Milan – Genoa
- RFC North Sea-Mediterranean: London / Dunkirk / Lille / Liège / Paris / Amsterdam – Rotterdam – Zeebrugge / Antwerp – Luxembourg – Metz – Dijon – Lyon / Basel – Marseille
- RFC North Sea-Baltic: Wilhelmshaven / Bremerhaven / Hamburg / Amsterdam / Rotterdam / Antwerp – Aachen / Berlin – Warsaw – Terespol / Kaunas / Falkenberg – Prague / Wrocław - Katowice
A part from railway undertakings who hold a licence and a safety certificate, other applicants (shippers, freight forwarders, etc.) can also apply for capacity on the corridors. They must first sign a capacity agreement with Infrabel. The applicant must designate a railway undertaking who will carry out the actual transport activities.
Corridor One Stop Shop
Each corridor has a Corridor One Stop Shop, where railway undertakings and applicants who are not railway undertakings can submit requests for international train paths using the corridors via the PCS (Path Coordination System). This application was developed by RailNetEurope (RNE), the designated service provider for corridor organisations.
You can find out more about the Corridor One Stop Shop on the relevant websites for each corridor, along with practical information regarding the regulations that apply to these freight corridors.
RFC Rhine-Alpine: www.corridor-rhine-alpine.eu
RFC North Sea-Mediterranean: www.rfc-northsea-med.eu
RFC North Sea-Baltic: www.rfc-northsea-baltic.eu