In the second quarter of this year combined transport in Europe decreased
In the second quarter of 2023, combined transport in Europe achieved a 14.41% reduction in transport results compared to the same period last year. This is the largest quarterly decline in intermodal transport in Europe since the covid pandemic, the International Union of Combined Road and Rail (UIRR) announced.
The period April-June 2023 was the third consecutive quarter when combined transport in Europe recorded a decline in freight volumes. This is due to the effects of the war in Ukraine, the reduction of transport on the New Silk Road, lower consumer spending in Europe, higher electricity prices and rising infrastructure access charges, which have reduced the competitiveness of rail transport compared to road transport. All these factors mean that the mood in the industry, measured by the UIRR Sentiment Index for the next 12 months, is defined as negative. The actions of the European Union and the Member States, which announce the promotion of sustainable rail transport and covering road transport with emissions charges, may contribute to the improvement of the results of combined transport in the coming years.
– The economic transition is predicted to last at least until the end of 2024, therefore measures will have to be taken to support the high fixed cost Combined Transport sector during this period. A wide range of options are already available to Member State governments to support electric rail freight through actions such as reduced track access charges or traction electricity price caps. The timely implementation of European law adopted during the past years such as the Mobility Package or the Eurovignette Directive amendment could also be helpful – said Ralf-Charley Schultze, President of UIRR.