Issue No.12

Traduction effectuée par June BURNHAM Middlesex University September 2004

Bulletin of the Observatory on Transport Policies and Strategies in Europe

Inter-modal transport, always a current topic, always problematic
As the work of the OTPSE progresses, it feeds naturally into the discussions of the Conseil National des Transports. The results of the thematic comparisons, just like the synthesis of the "current events" that have happened in the various countries, are presented and debated during the meetings of the Council's standing section, which is thereby able to make use of the content. On the initiative of the President Alain Gille, an even closer cooperation is now envisaged between the CNT and its Observatory. The Council has in fact embarked on the theme, always current and always problematic, of intermodal transport. The aim is to identify the practical lines of action that could be suggested to those involved in this type of transport, going beyond just the general state of play, which has already been established by various working groups and reports. The experiences of other countries are clearly precious references for feeding into the CNT's discussions. After a preliminary survey of the current position in the countries observed by OTPSE, a more detailed questionnaire has been drawn up, focusing on the analysis of concrete examples of success or difficulty in inter-modal transport. A second meeting of OTPSE will establish a synthesis of these reports and give the CNT's working group the international dimension which is still too rare in debates in France. In addition, OTPSE has accumulated considerable material since it was created, as reported in the Transport/Europe bulletins and the Dossiers de l'Observatoire (downloadable from the site: The time has undoubtedly come to make a first summary of it, and the network of experts has decided to aim to write a collective work which could be called Key Issues for a Transport Europe. We shall report again on this 'work-in-progress'... Editorial Key events

CONTENTS Page 1 1 7

Road freight transport firms in Europe in 2002

Key events
As in previous years, one session of the Observatory was devoted to analysing current events. The experts presented the situation in their country in the first quarter of 2004, with a particular mention of the way in which the effect of the enlargement of the Union on transport systems is being perceived by professional and political groups. Germany has launched an ambitious road toll project for heavy lorries (LKW Maut). From early 2003 rumours were circulating about technical problems in installing the very sophisticated Toll Collect system that had been chosen. After a first postponement in July of its entry into service (claimed to be needed to complete the test phase), the opening was delayed sine die in October. The question was immediately raised about the responsibility for this failure, which was very costly in terms of the public budget and damaging to the technological image of the country's industry. After various manoeuvres during which the government was criticised for its late and inefficient intervention, an agreement was concluded with those responsible for providing the equipment about the level of penalty and on an opening date in early 2005 for a simplified version of the system. Having had to abandon 2.2 billion euros in receipts for 2004, the Ministry of Transport froze the budget for work on new infrastructure projects. On rail passenger transport, the DB has introduced a fare structure inspired by the airline model (yield management). But the system appeared very complicated to users as well as to company staff, to the extent that journeys and receipts dropped. After some modifications, the system seems now to be more acceptable (a reminder of the introduction of Socrate in France a few years ago…) The enlargement of the Union is of considerable importance to Germany, because of its geographic position.

Michel Savy Director of OTPSE

Conseil National des Transports

The strategy the transport operators have adopted is to aim to play a predominant role in this new arena. The recent conference of logistics suppliers showed them to be very optimistic on this issue, but the DB's acquisitions have not always brought the results expected, and restructuring would seem to be necessary. To protect the labour market in Germany, and while the rate of unemployment in the new Länder remains high, a transitory period has been decided before there is free circulation of workers in Germany from the new member countries. The eastern part of the country will continue to receive aid after 2006. Among the questions to be resolved, the harmonisation of competition conditions in the fiscal domain, whether general or specific (TIPP), remains very important.

noise problems. DHL wants to increase its activity at Zaventem, which would create about 20,000 jobs directly and indirectly. Should it divide its traffic between two distinct hubs? The airport of Liège has been mentioned but it already houses the competitor express firm TNT.
• In Spain there is traditionally a tension between central government and the autonomous communities, which affects all policies, including that of infrastructure.

In Belgium the government has adopted the Kyoto protocol, but the practical implementation of this political decision is not easy and will have to involve an agreement with the regions.

The new government of Catalunya is showing increased interest in rail freight and has undertaken a revision of motorway tolls. A new Catalan law, approved in June 2003, is evidence of the change in attitude towards transport issues. It concerns mobility, sustainable development, democratic decision-making procedures on transport matters (with the creation of territorial authorities in the principal urban areas) and finally the links between urban planning and mobility. An observatory on mobility has been set up. At national level, government policy aims to adapt the railways to Community norms. It is assumed that the opening up to private initiative will improve the economic efficiency of the sector, increase the share of rail in transport and re-establish financial balance. The separation between infrastructure and operations is expected to become more marked (even though the two activities have stayed inside the same rail enterprise); it should enable the relevant infrastructure charges to be established and facilitate the opening up of the network to competition. The new agency for managing the infrastructure (ADIF) will combine the high-speed lines and the traditional network, as well as the stations and terminals, while RENFE will no longer be more than an operator. The current debt will be distributed between the two State enterprises and the State, which will take on a proportion of this debt. A Ports Law will open the way to privatisation and deregulation of their services, within a stabilised tariff structure, by encouraging competition to develop international logistics terminal functions, and by a reform of the dock workers' system. In addition, the port of Valencia is developing a dry port at Madrid to attract traffic from this region, while Barcelona is strengthening its links with Toulouse and Saragossa. Concession contracts for financing and running public works projects will be reformed to give more freedom of action to the concessionaires. The TGV between Madrid and Lleida entered into service in October 2003, but with the speed temporarily restricted to 200 kph. The line should reach Barcelona in 2007 and the French border in 2009. The enlargement of the Union has not led to much discussion in Spain on transport matters. However, some observers emphasise that the displacement of the centre of gravity eastwards will accentuate the peripheral location of Spain,

Two points of view have emerged on the effect of the enlargement of the Union. On the one hand, the relocation of firms is already an old phenomenon, but public opinion is more sensitive to it during periods of unemployment. For that reason a transitional period of two years was decided, before the free circulation of workers becomes established. On the other hand, there is a shortage of road drivers and boat-crew in Belgium, which has provoked demands for opening the jobs market in certain sectors. The maritime fleet in Belgian ownership is considerable, but navigates primarily under flags of convenience. The Law of 2002, accepted by the Commission, aims to encourage its repatriation via a tonnage tax that is more advantageous than formerly. It is proving a great success. The envisaged reform of the railways could lead to the setting up of a holding company that separates infrastructure management more clearly from transport operations. Negotiations with trades-unions have started; the latter will accept a reduction in staff on condition that the rail workers' statute is maintained. The profitable part of ABX, the freight and logistics subsidiary of SNCB, could change its name and be privatised. As to SNCB itself, there is the issue of the Belgian State taking back its historic debt! On the roads, measures to reduce contravention has hardened, and speeds have dropped. Air transport has returned to strong activity. SN Brussels, which has partly taken over from Sabena, is profiting from its traffic to and from Africa. A fusion with Virgin Belgique might be envisaged. The Commission's decision on the subsidies received by the low-cost firm Ryanair to use Charleroi airport (which is in an Objective 1 region for European regional policy), seems to have assessed the case in a fairly political way. Night flights continue to pose


giving increased importance to the necessary passage through French territory. PS. Since the last meeting of the OPSTE the Spanish government has changed and the new team has already announced some clear reversals on transport policy issues, such as the withdrawal of the Railways Law and the drawing-up of a new infrastructure plan. In France there have been several months of discussion on transport policy, especially the planning and financing of infrastructure projects. An audit requested from the Conseil général des ponts et chaussées and the Finance Inspectorate on the economic return on investment, a report by the regional planning agency DATAR on regional development policy viewed within the European dimension, two parliamentary reports on the future of rail freight and on the feasibility of "sea highways", underpinned a debate at the National Assembly and the Senate. Then, on 18 December 2003, at an Interministerial Council on Aménagement du Territoire (CIADT), the government defined its priorities on infrastructure matters until 2015. Thirty five projects concerning all modes and all regions were selected. The largest share of funds would go to non-road investment and in particular to the TGV. The CIADT also aimed to strengthen the metropolitan role of regional capitals. To ensure the funding of this programme, the prime minister overruled the Ministry of Finance's traditional position in favour of creating a Agency for Funding Infrastructure, in which local authorities would be members alongside the State. It would receive income from motorway tolls (which are therefore not going to be privatised) and should be operational in 2005. Current affairs have also been marked by the pursuit of decentralisation. Transfers to local and regional authorities concern in particular a large proportion of national roads, the State keeping only the trunk road and motorway network. Local airports (State-owned, and managed by chambers of commerce), could also be transferred. The question of financial compensation for taxes and financing of these structures is still unresolved. After Air Lib in 2003, Air Littoral has just gone into receivership. Caught between an Air France which has just fused with KLM, low cost British and Irish companies, and the TGV, the independent airlines do not have a favourable outlook in France…
• •

with responsibility for regional development and transport; and the constitution of a super-ministry for public works, environment, regional policy, transport and merchant shipping (the latter has traditionally wanted to keep its autonomy). The EU Framework Programme is bringing 3 billion euros, matched by an equivalent amount from the Greek State, to fund Trans-European Networks (TENs) between 2001 and 2006. The investment will especially concern rail transport (journey time between Athens and Salonika should be shortened from 7 to 4 hours), and urban transport (in particular in the capital, where there is a substantial effort to develop "green" buses with their own lanes). The Olympic Games will be the most noteworthy "key event". The planned equipment and operating systems must be ready on time! The new RER will be in service; it avoids the centre and constitutes a new "ring-road" with links to the new airport. It is expected that 90% of personal journeys to the Games will be by public transport. In addition to the new projects, the metro stations have been renovated (up to 5.5 million visitors are expected, with a peak of up to 150,000 people-movements an hour). Even the taxi fleet is being renewed! At the moment, the company running the two metro lines is profitable. Road safety has made great progress (from a poor starting point): the number of deaths has gone down by 25% in a year, because of the new infrastructure and a larger number of police checks. In Greece the question of enlargement is dominated by relations with the Balkans. International traffic in Greece is currently oriented towards the West, trade with the Black Sea being less than forecast and the existing infrastructure being little used. Nevertheless, the opening up of nearby markets is a very important issue, including in the countries of the former Yugoslavia. In Italy, after the fusion of the Ministry of Public Works and the Ministry of Transport, it seemed that transport policy would be limited to infrastructure policy. The creation of a State Secretariat, in the hands of an official from an association of road freight firms (mostly small firms) was a response to this situation. A new "consultative committee for road transport" brings together operators from all specialities (including combined transport) and will designate experts responsible for drawing up a national logistics plan. The creation of a points system for driving licences, motivated by the campaign for road safety, has had unintended consequences. The new restrictions on the flexibility of road transport have led to it becoming more expensive (an increase of 10% to 20% has been mentioned). The reaction has been very interesting: large manufacturers and distributors have embarked on a process of transport rationalisa•

The parliamentary elections in Greece did not show up any clear differences on transport matters between the two main parties: the privatisation of Olympic Airways, the creation of an organising authority in metropolitan zones, and the management of the 3rd European Framework Programme, enjoy a consensus.

The two parties take different positions on administrative and institutional questions: the proposal to create regions


tion, to avoid the numerous inefficiencies and costs linked to poor organisation. For example, times of arrival at freight terminals will be fixed and respected more rigorously, whereas unproductive waiting times of several hours used to be normal practice. The national airline Alitalia is almost bankrupt. There are serious trade-union disputes, connecting to other transport professions (notably with urban transport employees), and adopting the same types of confrontation that died down in Italy about 20 years ago. To this labour crisis is added the poor management of the issue of the new Milan airport. Malpensa was supposed to become the principal hub of Alitalia (and allow it to benefit from advantages comparable to those enjoyed by Air France at Roissy). But the old airport of Linate has been kept in operation, at the request of the Lombardy region, with the effect that the new equipment is under-used and the hub effect is not occurring. Rail-road inter-modal transport is developing quite well (contrary to what is being observed in other countries). Support measures were negotiated with the European Commission but the sums envisaged have not yet been transferred. The traffic seems to avoid France, where the service has the reputation of being insufficiently reliable, and goes via Switzerland (where subsidies for rail-road combined transport are substantial). With the entry of new operators onto the market, slot management is becoming an important issue and requires sophisticated programming tools. However the statistics do not have sufficient detail (in number of containers, whether full or empty, and not in number of trains as is unfortunately the case), to understand the evolution within each company in any depth. In Poland the LOT airline company in 2003 joined Star Alliance, dominated by Lufthansa and United Airlines. SAS is hoping to participate in this company. A new airport for Warsaw is being studied. In 2004 two possible sites were selected. This new infrastructure could take over the freight activity and night flights of the current airport of Okecie, threatened by a curfew. The new project is very ambitious: a capacity of 70 million passengers and an investment of 3 billion euros to be carried out by 2015 have been mentioned. The port of Gdansk expects to have a new cargo terminal, the largest in Poland, to be financed by a British group. A new fuel tax has been introduced to fund transport infrastructure. It will be paid by importers at the level of 23 euros per tonne of fuel and then passed onto consumers (about 2 centimes a litre). The receipts will feed into a national road fund created by the State since the network is in very poor condition. Among the Trans-European Networks (TENs) supported by the European Commission, four cross the Polish territory. The level of investment will be of the order of 9 billion

euros, of which the Union will be responsible for half. In addition, the modernisation of the rail network will cost 2.3 billion euros between now and 2007, of which the Union will pay half. PKP (the historic rail operator) plans to create 7 logistics centres and a new line towards Ukraine. The reform of the company is envisaged for 2006 and will include the separation and privatisation of the freight part and the main line passenger part (Intercity), as well as the closure of the most loss-making lines. Enlargement is obviously a major event for Poland. While French transport firms say they fear CEEC transport firms, and especially those from Poland, Polish transport firms are afraid of Baltic transport firms, on the one hand, and those of western Europe on the other. West European transport firms are buying Polish firms and using Polish firms as sub-contractors but leaning heavily on prices. This trend is made even stronger in that the manufacturers that have set up in the last few years have generally come with their usual logistics providers, which confirms the position of Polish providers as subcontractors. Polish drivers could no doubt go and work in the West: only the youngest, the most mobile, will attempt that adventure. Ireland alone is said to lack 30,000 lorry drivers.
• Portugal gives great importance to its relations with Spain, notably in transport matters. Their two transport ministers have recently settled the question of the TGV network between the two countries. In the end the scheme of a direct link between Lisbon and Madrid was chosen, while a North-South section will link Lisbon and Porto within the country. Another international East-West link, situated further south, is envisaged for the long term.

The enhancement of Sinnes as an Atlantic port, run by PSA (the Port of Singapore) is being delayed. The port installations are in place, but the land access to the port is very inadequate (there is no rail access and the road connection consists of an ordinary two-lane road) and traffic remains very limited. However, Sinnes could be an alternative to Algesiras for serving the hinterland, including Madrid, and some Spanish interests would like to take shares in the port. The plan for a new Lisbon airport has been called into question. The modernisation of the existing airport is being re-examined, on condition that the military authorities accept a transfer to another site. This change is due to the cost of work on new infrastructure, too high to permit a "PPP", as well as the reluctance of regional authorities to close the current airport. Finally, Iberia looks as though it might take over the national company TAP, profitable after a long difficult period. Madrid would then be able to reinforce its hub function, ruling out the development of another hub at Lisbon. As for national transport, a national Plan for climate change has been adopted, designed to implement the Kyoto


undertakings. For the moment Portugal's emissions are about 10% above its limit. The renovation of the car stock would bring significant improvement but would represent considerable expenditure, especially if the average purchasing power of the population is taken into account. The country's performance on road safety remains among the worst in Europe, particularly because of the impact of alcohol and speeding, and in the absence of a licence based on points. The system of "shadow tolling" aims to facilitate the private financing of infrastructure, public authorities substituting for users in the payment of tolls, rewarding the contractors on the basis of demand. But the burden is likely to be too heavy for the public purse and motorway projects have slowed down despite the protests of the public works industry. The conurbations of Lisbon and Porto have finally been given urban transport authorities, but they do not have financial autonomy from the Ministry of Finance, which must give its opinion before there is any undertaking to spend. Urban transport is moreover in trouble: levels of usage have dropped by about 20% in both cities, because of a complex and incoherent fare structure and a lack of complementarity between the modes. Lisbon is conducting an experiment with a car-free area in its historic centre, but the question of residential parking has not been resolved and traffic has been pushed out to neighbouring zones, which are congested. The effects on the urban structure are not yet well- understood (for example, should there be concern about a possible flight of jobs in the liberal professions?). On the south bank of the Tage, work on the metro project has started: it will serve about 200,000 people. The State is funding only the infrastructure: all the rest is up to the operator, which has been given a thirty-year concession.
• In the United Kingdom the Freight Transport Association (an association which has no equivalent in France since it is composed of major firms transporting by road, whether third-party or own account), is concerned about enlargement, but its members are already well set up in the CEEC (starting with Exel, the logistics leader). Within the national market, this association is favourable to the free circulation of workers (unlike its German equivalent), because there is a lack of freight drivers, which some observers put at 50,000 jobs. Could the system however absorb a reduction in salaries without problems? On its side, the Road Haulage Association (which brings together small firms transporting for third parties), is worried about losing its share of the market, where cabotage is concerned, though the volume of this traffic is very small. Either way, political circles do not seem to be concerned and hardly mention these questions in connection with transport.

The London congestion charge, introduced in February 2003, has been the subject of a first annual evaluation. The technical arrangements, deliberately very simple, worked reasonably well from the beginning. The figures show that the traffic remains stabilised at a level lower than before the charge was introduced (15% fewer vehicle-km and 34% fewer cars). In one sense the success of the traffic reduction has outstripped the forecasts because the receipts are lower than the sums expected. Congestion has been reduced by about 30% on average, the impact outside the zone being very limited (1% to 2% of additional traffic), and the punctuality and frequency of buses have improved greatly. Effects of the charge on business activity are more difficult to estimate, because the drop noted in shop receipts in the zone stems from a number of factors, including the war in Iraq and a closure of a metro line. The operation of the automated checking system is still an issue. About 20% of drivers were querying their fine (120 euros as opposed to a full tariff charge of 8 euros). More than half the residents in Greater London approve of the charge, and a quarter say they would be favourable to its extension, which could take place by 2010. The government has published a White Paper on airports to deal with the demand forecast for 2030. But this question is not one only for the State, which limits itself to deciding whether to give planning permission to a private operator. This report suggests that neither a new airport nor a second hub in addition to London is necessary. It would suffice to add a runway at Stansted (in 2012) and another at Heathrow (in 2015). The operators would prefer them in the reverse order, but the environmental situation around Heathrow is poor (mainly because of the motorways serving the area, and not just the aeroplanes!) and thus there is a need to wait for a new generation of planes. The airports operator (BAA) wants to reduce the noise at Heathrow by encouraging companies to use less noisy aeroplanes, rather than reduce the number of night flights. The White Paper did not take up the proposals that had often been made before about increasing fiscal charges on air transport. To guide public policy decisions, a report similar to that produced by M. Boiteux in France has been published on the monetary values of externalities. A draft Bill envisages linking the charge for landing rights to the nuisances caused. The government wants in addition to pursue its policy of introducing a market in greenhouse gas emissions, at the European level.
• In Sweden the Law on Infrastructure Planning 200415 has been adopted. In conformity with this law the administrative regions, as well as national administrations for road and rail, drew up their own plans for this period. On the basis of these documents, there were negotiations between the political parties which ended in an agreement voted by parliament. It concerns a total investment of 40 billion euros, to be carried out by 2015. The sum will be


divided into 24 billion euros for roads (new projects and maintenance), 10 billion euros for rail (new projects and maintenance), 4 billion euros for the regions and 1 billion euros for safety. Points noted were the decision to develop home-work transport, to improve communications between metropolitan areas, and to seek "a more effective society". On the matter of public transport, two reports have been made to the government as preparation for a new law. To improve urban transport they suggest bringing closer together urban planning and transport planning (in the same way as SCOTs and PDUs in France). It would also mean improving transport supply in accordance with the desires of customers. On railways, the report is more controversial: how can the interests of the users, competition and Community regulation all be taken into consideration? Rail has a share of the market of the order of 15% for long-distance passenger travel, on links between conurbations. The rail market is open to competition but certain services are regarded as a public service: their supply is guaranteed by the public authorities, even if their provision is confided to one operator or another. For other services the market is open to any rail company holding a licence. Cabotage by foreign firms is envisaged providing there is reciprocity. Rail freight traffic operates at fixed hours and for manufacturing clients. To increase international transport there must be better provision of favourable slots, an increase in speeds and easier border crossings. Green Cargo, the freight subsidiary of the historic operator, itself has a subsidiary, the operator TGOJ, which could be sold to facilitate competition. Road safety is a sensitive political theme. After 530 deaths in 2003, the objective is 270 deaths in 2007, within a framework of "Vision Zero", total safety! A Law being prepared envisages modulating maximum speed according to the circumstances, requiring cyclists to wear a helmet, and providing cars with a "alcohol lock" that would stop the car starting if it detected high alcohol levels. Doctors would be asked to report people unsuited to driving. Research is being carried out on the impact zones of heavy and light utility vehicles. Re-organising three-lane roads as 2 lanes plus an alternating lane will be continued. The urban toll in Stockholm is expected to be given a trial for 18 months then be subject to a referendum. The expected income would be assigned to public transport. It would consist of a "cordon" toll, between 6.30 and 18.30 on weekdays. The amount would be varied at rush hour in order not to saturate the ring-road. The maximum amount will be 8 euros a day. Worries about EU enlargement concern mainly road goods transport, for which there is no existing harmonisation of competition rules. Already the large logistics group have subsidiaries in the new member countries, benefiting from

the corresponding advantages. But there must also be a harmonisation of safety conditions in air transport, as well as maritime transport: the maritime transport of fuel from Russia is very considerable and subjects the Baltic Sea to serious ecological risks. Finally, the low cost airline companies have entered massively onto the Swedish market, with a too-abundant supply that has completely unbalanced the market. Switzerland is still experiencing problems with its national airline company, now called Swiss, with losses of about 500 billion euros in the last year. A new restructuring, with the loss of 3000 jobs, has been announced. After the failure of a 'top of the market' strategy, then that of low cost, the outlook is not clear. The company has moreover a need to modernise its fleet and is asking for federal funds for this purpose, a request received with reticence by the new centre-right government. In addition, the air agreements with Germany have not been ratified by Parliament, leading to Germany imposing severe restrictions which are handicapping the traffic from Zurich. The affair will go to the international tribunal… Finally, the private company in charge of air traffic control, Skyguide, has been blamed for an accident that happened recently and is also in difficulty. On road transport, a new traffic management system has been inaugurated in the Gothard tunnel after the accident of 2001. The tunnel has been refurbished and a one-way system has been introduced for heavy vehicles. This management of the flow of lorries allows traffic to move at a rate equal to that before the accident (4000 vehicles a day), with reduced waiting times. The toll on heavy lorries recently introduced has already brought in 500 billion euros, some assigned to investment in the new rail Alpine crossing, which should be operational in 2007, while the share of these receipts assigned to urban public transport is diminishing. The transalpine lorry traffic amounted to 1.3 million vehicles for the year 2003, which is a reduction of 8% on the level the year before. To develop the rail network, Parliament had asked for a better connection from Geneva and Lausanne to the French TGV, with a budget voted since 1998. The Germanspeaking regions made a similar demand in 2003 for a connection to the German ICE, which could be achieved in two stages. The work required for the new Alpine tunnels seems to be more costly than was foreseen; Parliament has been asked for additional funds, but it is having trouble finding the supplementary budget. In order to protect the environment, the law on CO2 envisages a reduction of 8% in emissions coming from fuel between now and 2010. The debate has still not led to agreed measures to be taken to achieve that reduction. Will the voluntary undertakings given by actors suffice, or will there be a need to use market mechanisms by making fuel


more expensive? If that latter assumption is correct, the receipts generated would be assigned, as used to be the case in Germany, to reducing social charges in order to re-energise the jobs market. Finally a referendum was held recently on the "Avanti" proposition, which consists of strengthening the country's motorway network through a programme of 20 billion euros. The projects was rejected by 62% of votes. * This synthesis was derived from contributions by Catherina Horn (Technical University of Dresden), Michel Beuthe (Catholic University of Mons), Rafael Gimenez i Capdevila (Institute of Territorial Studies, Barcelona), Antoine Beyer (University Louis Pasteur, Strasbourg), Séraphin Kapros (University of the Aegean Sea), Sergio Bologna (Progetrasporti), Velesina Nikitsenka (University Paris 12), Fernando Nunes da Silva (CESUR of Lisbon), June Burnham (Middlesex University), Bertil Carstam (B Consoy), Tristan Chevroulet (Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale of Lausanne).

The regulatory procedure is the one that has been adopted; that is, making provisions that are applied directly (as opposed to directives, in which transposition by States into national law allows them to be adjusted to a greater or less extent). They concern all modes of transport for freight, and all modes except road for travellers. The unit measured is that of each individual leg of the journey, and therefore the organisation of the transport chain from one end to the other is not known. On road freight transport, the data collected for 2002 concern the contribution of the different "flags" of vehicles registered in countries of the "EU 15" (without Greece but with Norway added).

Predominance of various "flags"
Traffic in 2002
National transport Tonnes Tonnes -km
millions billions


International transport Tonnes Tonnes -km
millions billions

Austria Belgium Germany Denmark Spain

246 301 2 769 194 1 710 414 1 967 211 1 217 27 447 212 112 321 1 671 11 819

12 24 216 11 129 28 170 11 160 1 30 11 8 28 189 1 028

40 91 122 15 51 6 70 13 37 25 122 4 12 7 21 634

25 34 60 11 55 4 35 4 33 9 47 3 14 5 13 351

Change 2000-02 Nat. & internat. Tonnes -km % 16.1 0,9 1.6 -6.3 24,1 0 0.2 16.3 4.3 21.1 -2.8 3.0 15.4 2.8 -2.5 4.1

Road freight transport firms in Europe in 2002 (a DAEI/SES study)
The main findings from a recent study on companies transporting road freight in Europe were presented to the Observatory on Transport Policies and Strategies in Europe by Yves Robin, Head of the Economic and Statistical Service (DAEI/SES), of the ministry responsible for transport in France. Road freight transport in Europe still remains poorly understood, even though it constitutes a large proportion of surface transport. The Commission pushed member-States to agree a regulation that obliges them to produce "structural statistics of firms" covering all economic sectors, including transport. The transport component is relatively low-key, but the first results of this new effort are now available. In addition to this general provision there are also various regulatory acts designed to contribute, in statistical matters, to the implementation of the Common Transport Policy.

Finland France Ireland Italy Luxembourg Netherlands Norway Portugal Sweden UK Total

Source: DAEI/SES (French and European surveys of road haulage firms)

The comparative proportions of domestic transport and international transport vary considerably from one country to another, and explain to a large extent both the structure and dynamics of the firms and the policy directions taken by each State. The Netherlands and Belgium are in this respect the most extrovert, while the international role of the United Kingdom and France is diminishing, suggesting a lost of competitiveness of their "national flag". The German flag is in the first European rank, in 2002, for national and international transport.


Total (15)

106 Tkm DE 193 477 ES 6 60 160 39 121 3 92 3 18 147 868 202 49 0 0 0 13 43 23 3 838 0 0 0 FR 10 1023 596 497 IE 0 0 0 0 0 IT 188 114 305 39 111 2 LU 0 7 5 0 0 0 2 NL 1 UK Total 6 412 2275 1757 597 530 392 650 1977 1798 85


BE 4

Transfers are balanced only with Italy and the United Kingdom. Italy (28%) is ahead of Germany and Belgium as the primary origin/destination of French-registered vehicles in bilateral transport. The Spanish flag has become the primary European flag in bilateral transfers with France (25% of 63.4 billion tonnes-km).

8 206 0 0 0 5 18 6 0 243 38 0 43 0 1

187 385 115 124 0 4 1 4 8 6 156 365 26 4 390

The firms
Country Staff costs per employee (1000 euros) 28.7 31.0 34.3 34.7 19.7 29.9 28.6 28.4 31.5 36.4 14.6 34.5 29.9

305 148 13 23 1

Germany Austria Belgium Denmark Spain Finland France Italy Luxembourg Netherlands Portugal Sweden United Kingdom

106 852 255 857 9 9

456 3049 678 3440 14

14 320 1470 11015

Source: DAEI/SES (French and European surveys of road haulage firms)

The opening of cabotage (the right to carry out domestic services, given to any transport firm from an EU-member country, independent of its nationality), emphasises the difference between "caboteur-countries" (Benelux) and countries in which cabotage takes place (Germany, France, United Kingdom). Cabotage is however very small (0.8% by all the "flags" together in the 15 countries studied).

Information about firms remains limited because of a lack of homogeneity of the available data. A few indicators such as the cost of staff per employee already enables strong differentiation to be noted, with a clear South-North gradient which does not stop firms in the North from demonstrating their competitiveness!

Source : DAEI/SES/Eurostat

Bilateral traffic with France
Country Flag Traffic entering France 106 t-km 6 374 2 870 7 041 2 695 7 721 2 753 153 13 4 666 4 184 335 175 3 371 792 1 068 68 1 558 1 043 33 837 14 727 Traffic leaving France 106 t-km 5 257 3 374 4 940 2 313 8 147 3 126 136 6 4 533 4 296 200 214 2 215 527 1 193 138 1 605 2 186 29 582 16 470 French flag's share

In the near future, it is hoped that data on movements of goods from one region to another will become available, which will provide a better understanding of the European territory in its character as a system of movements.
For more information see: "Notes de synthèse du SES". n°152, Mars-Avril 2004 (DAEI/SES)


German French Belgium Belgian French Spain Spanish French Ireland Irish French Italy Italian French Luxembourg Luxembourg French Netherlands Dutch French Portugal Portuguese French UK British French TotalUE14+Nor. UE14 + Nor. French

35% 29% 27% 6% 48%

The Bulletin Transport/Europe is available in French and English on the CNT website. The Dossiers de l'Observatoire can also be downloaded: See the topic heading: "Observatoire des politiques et des stratégies de transport en Europe".

To join the mailing list, please e-mail: 42% 19% 8% 51% 33% CNT Observatory on Transport Policies and Strategies in Europe 34 avenue Marceau 75008 Paris (France) Tel. 01 53 23 85 85 Fax. 01 53 23 85 80 Website : ISSN 1620-2775 Bulletin Director: Michel Savy Editor: Christine Aubriot Printed by Compo Imprim

Source: DAEI/SES (French and European surveys of road haulage firms)

The French flag provides a third (31.2 billion tonnes-km) of bilateral transport between France and the 14 countries.


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