Metranas intermodal terminal in Prague, source: Metrans

‘If rail must be doubled, intermodal must be tripled’

Welcoming the newly constituted European Parliament Transport and Tourism (TRAN) Committee, the UIRR has published a list of recommendations concerning European transport policy for the 2019-2024 legislative period. It identifies thirteen policy measures to be implemented in order to boost intermodal growth.

The European rail freight industry ambitions to see the doubling of rail freight’s market share in the EU by 2030, when it should represent 30 per cent of all cargo transported through the continent. Intermodal freight transport will need to triple its current performance to enable the achievement of this European rail freight ambition, UIRR concluded.

Tripling intermodal volumes

“This tripling of intermodal freight volumes would result in a 5 per cent reduction of the total EU transport sector’s CO2 emissions, alongside substantial cuts to air and noise pollution, road accidents and traffic congestion, as well as reduced road degradation”, the UIRR wrote.

“The TRAN Committee of the European Parliament, with Karima Delli as its re-elected chairperson, will play a pivotal role in delivering the needed legislative and policy changes in the field of European transportation.”


The recommendations to the TRAN Committee are related to improving the performance of railways in general, and creating a fair, mode-neutral regulatory framework to allow the intermodal market to grow. In this last regard, it points out legislation as the Combined Transport Directive, the Eurovignette Directive, the Mobility Package and the Electronic Freight Transport Information (eFTI) Regulation.

It also recommends certain measures specifically to the European Commission. Among others, it suggests revising the EU Transport White Paper, recreating a dedicated logistics and intermodal unit within DG Move and transforming the EU Agency for Railway into an EU Agency for Land Transport. The full position paper can be found here.

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Author: Majorie van Leijen

Majorie van Leijen is editor of, online magazine for rail freight professionals.

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