Dutch railway deal is “fundamentally illegal” say independents


The contract the Dutch government intends to award to Dutch railway operator NS for passenger transport services is facing EU scrutiny and is “fundamentally illegal”, according to ALLRAIL. The new concession which would run from 1 January 2025 to the end of 2033 grants unjustified subsidies, covers a disproportionate size of railway services and its timing is “suspicious”.

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‘Belgium’s approach to encouraging night trains should be emulated across Europe’

The Belgian measure in which night train operators will pay nothing for track access fees and energy over the next two years should be adopted across Europe, says ALLRAIL, which represents new entrants in passenger rail. The organisation celebrates the launch of European Sleeper last week, the “first ever – independently owned – scheduled long-distance rail operator to depart from Belgium”.

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The First Ever Independent Scheduled Long-Distance Passenger Rail Service Departs from Belgium

A few days ago, history was made in Belgian passenger rail: European Sleeper was the first independently owned scheduled long-distance rail operator to depart from Belgium. Its new night train is commercially driven - not a Public Service Obligation (PSO) - and links Belgium, the Netherlands with Berlin in Germany.

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Belangenorganisatie ALLRAIL waarschuwt Kamer: ‘NS concessie in strijd met marktregels’

De Europese belangenorganisatie ALLRAIL waarschuwt in een brandbrief de kamercommissie voor Infrastructuur en Waterstaat voor een “extreme tunnelvisie” van het ministerie aangaande een nieuwe onderhandse concessie voor NS. Daarbij zegt ALLRAIL dat het ministerie de Europese marktordeningsregels niet naleeft, waardoor de “geloofwaardigheid van het Europese spoorbeleid wordt ondermijnt”.

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Brussels & The Hague,

NETHERLANDS: Civil Court confirms doubts on legitimacy of proposed direct award to NS

The Dutch Civil Court of The Hague published a preliminary ruling this week, expressing doubts about the legitimacy of the proposed new direct award of the Dutch “Hoofdrailnet” (Main Rail Network) Public Service Contract – representing 95% of the total market – to the state rail incumbent Nederlandse Spoorwegen (‘NS’).