Have a debate or two on the train through Hungary

Hungary has the ambition to become an intermodal junction in Eastern Europe and to prove that, it is organising its first Intermodal Conference in Budapest on 14 and 15 October. Apart from gathering experts from the industry, it is also taking its visitors on the train to Fényeslitke on the Ukrainian border, to see what promises to be the largest terminal of Europe.

It is the first time that Hungary organises the event. The country is currently heavily investing in its rail infrastructure, in order to claim its position in the region, but also on the New Silk Road. Hungary is not only ambitioning a leading role on Eastern Europe, but also wants to be the gateway between Europe and Asia. The construction of the East-West Gate terminal on the border with Ukraine is likely to give that ambition a push towards realisation.

Intermodal conference EWG

What is on the programme

Intermodal is the dominating theme of the conference, with all factors taken into account. There will be speakers representing rail, but also road and waterborne transport. Terminals, but also cross-border gates will contribute to the discussion.

On the governmental level, Hungarian officials will be represented, as well as EU policymakers. International relations, policy instruments, the Green Deal and investment plans are some of the topics that will be discussed.

Train journey

On the second day, the international crowd will be taken to Fényeslitke on the Ukrainian border, to visit the East-West Gate terminal. This terminal is due to be completed, and has a theoretical capacity of 1 million TEUs, depending on the infrastructure developments in Hungary. But even without these developments, the terminal has plenty of capacity to form a new gateway on the New Silk Road, said Adam Talosi, member of the board at terminal operator East-West Gate (EWG).

The train journey takes 3.5 hours, but this time will not be wasted, as the discussion continues on board. Two panel discussions will be held on the train: one about the future of alternative fuels, and another about the future of shipping and the impact on overland transport. The train arrives back in Budapest in the evening.

More to come

“Organising our first conference, we already look at the second and the following ones. We would like to provide regular opportunities for economic operators to get to know certain parts, contexts and economic models of intermodal transport. This can be used to organise processes and find business opportunities”, said event organiser East-West Gate (EWG).

“Those who will deliver presentations belong to the cream of domestic and international transport and have been practising their profession very successfully for many years. The information that they will share is based on many years of experience and can be put to good use in practice.

Author: Majorie van Leijen

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

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