The EU is pushing the railways to blackout

The daily E15 published an interview with the General Director of VÚZ Martin Bělčík. The Railway Research Institute (VÚŽ) tests and certifies trains of all world manufacturers. Mr Bělčík described here how the distribution of subsidies and EU regulations accumulate requirements for carriers over a short period of time, which significantly affects the stability of the sector.

Photo by Ankush Minda he Unsplash

In the last programming period, around 2013 and 2014, the EU released a large amount of money. At one point, there was a huge oversupply of demand for new vehicles across Europe. The manufacturers welcomed it and threw themselves into the tenders. Customers wanted new trains within two years at the latest. But they forgot that if demand jumped, production capacity will hit the ceiling. No one told the clients: “Boys and girls, no one will deliver the train to you in two years.” In addition, customers configured trains a little differently each time, driving all manufacturers to the tests. Subsidy appetite across Europe has distorted the market. The vast majority of projects are delayed and new trains are long awaited.

The second madness is the mass and time-consuming implementation of the ETCS safety system, which can, for example, prevent a head-on collision. Europe has again accumulated pan-European demand in one period. All carriers competed with ETCS. However, the introduction of ETCS can cause relocations and market changes in terms of economic complexity. Let us admit hypothetically that one day you will turn on this system and say to everyone who will not have it, “Sorry. Don’t you? You’re not going. ”Many small carriers will find it difficult to raise funds for this.

And then there’s the Green deal. Over the last five years, the entire railway has shifted from analog to digital. At the same time, there is a shift from traditional to alternative drives. Unfortunately, business continuity in energy is not being addressed. Until recently, energy prices were low, now rising and it will be a big problem. What is a big current topic for the whole European railway is a possible blackout. The traffic would stop immediately. If you ask any companies how they are prepared for a three-day power outage, they will stumble. The digitized world needs stable power and power to function.

So we’ll see how it all turns out. If the transport of goods ends up in trucks or the increased costs of carriers passed on to the final prices will reduce the demand for goods to such an extent that nothing will be transported. Read the whole article here



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