Rolling stock
Brussels & London,

Open Access is Now – Private Investment is Proven to Grow the Rail Sector IF Certain Barriers to Entry Are Broken Down

Now, just 2 and a half years after its launch, Lumo is already profitable and significantly boosting the profits of its parent company, First Group.

What is the difference to the EU?

▶ In the UK, there is impartial retail – All Rail Tickets Sold At All Rail Ticket Vendors – e.g. it is regulated that LNER sells Lumo (and vice-versa). The priority is Full Transparency for passengers.
▶ There is a vibrant rolling stock market. Despite being entirely Open Access, Lumo has a brand-new fleet, funded by a leasing company.
▶ Track Access Charges are much lower, especially for new Open Access services - unlike the 17.7% increase that is foreseen in Germany next year.

Conclusion: Open Access works – but sadly, we are still a long way from achieving Lumo-style newcomers in the EU.

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Sweet dreams vs rail nightmares

“While the lop-sided nature of the financing market persists, there must be correctional action,” says Mr Nick Brooks, secretary general of the Alliance of Passenger Rail New Entrants (AllRail).

“All rolling stock operators should receive the same financing terms as state-owned rail incumbents, if necessary, with a similar type of state-backed guarantee. This should remain the case until the rail financing market achieves a similar level of maturity as, say, the aviation or bus sector.”

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Common position about the use of the current European Vehicle Number (EVN)

In the context of this ongoing reform, AERRL, ALLRAIL, CER, ERFA, UIC, UIP, UIRR and UNIFE have defined a new common position about the use of the current European Vehicle Number and a vision of its evolution. They highlight the advantage of the existing EVN structure as a speaking number and they advocate keeping the authorisation (managed by manufacturers) and registration (managed by keepers) processes clearly separate.

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Yet Another Long-Distance Startup Operator Ends Its Activities

After Railcoop, yet another passenger rail start-up – Midnight Trains – has ended its activities in the face of the high market barriers to entry. This is another stark reminder that the EU passenger rail market remains much more open in legislation than it is in reality.

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Midnight Trains : une autre start-up ferroviaire met fin à ses activités

Après Railcoop, une autre start-up ferroviaire - Midnight Trains – a mis fin à ses activités en raison des importantes barrières à l'entrée sur le marché. Cela nous rappelle une fois de plus que le marché européen du transport ferroviaire de voyageurs reste beaucoup plus ouvert dans la législation qu'il ne l'est dans la réalité.

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