On 21 February, Denis Choumert, President of ESC, and Pauline Bastidon, ESC Rail Manager, attended a strategy meeting with rail freight corridors to discuss railway undertakings and shippers’ expectations with regard to the corridors. The meeting was also attended by several shippers members of ESC or its member associations, representatives from railway undertakings and representatives from each of the nine European rail freight corridors. ESC highlighted the need for more reliable rail freight services, more attractive lead times and greater flexibility, that would all need to be provided to shippers at an attractive price in order to encourage more shippers to make use of rail freight.
This meeting will not be a one-off, but the first of more regular interactions between the corridors and their end users, including shippers. As a follow-up, corridors will collect case studies from shippers using rail or willing to use rail on a cross-border basis, to better understand their needs and expectations. Concrete next steps were also discussed to improve rail freight’s reliability, including measures allowing rail freight companies to better anticipate potential bottlenecks related to ongoing or planned work on the network and to better inform shippers. Shippers will be invited to join annual meetings of individual corridors, where solutions tailored to specific needs of individual corridors will be discussed. For further information, please contact Pauline Bastidon at firstname.lastname@example.org.