EUROPE: The Alliance for Rail New Entrants was launched on April 20 to bring together non-incumbent passenger and freight operators who are ‘committed to fair competition and open markets as the only way to shift freight and passengers from road to rail by offering attractive and additional choices’.

ALLRAIL has been established in Brussels by the European Rail Freight Association which represents non-incumbent freight operators, and open access passenger operators LEO Express and Regiojet of the Czech Republic, Sweden’s MTR Nordic, Italy’s NTV, Austria’s Westbahn and independent ticket retailer Trainline. More members are expected to join in the coming months.

ALLRAIL said it supports ‘real change’ to remove barriers to accessing rail infrastructure, in the belief that more competition would save money for customers as well as the authorities procuring public services. Key topics it will focus on include fully opening of the rail markets in all EU member states, non-discriminatory infrastructure access including competitive track access charges, financing for rolling stock and an open approach to data and ticketing.

Westbahn CEO Erich Forster has been elected President of ALLRAIL, with ERFA director Tony Berkeley as Vice-President. LEO Express CEO Peter Koehler, Head of European Affairs at Trainline Nick Brooks and ERFA director François Coart have been elected as directors.