Competitive Tendering of Rail Services

European Conference of Ministers of Transport

Competitive tendering provides a way to introduce competition to railways whilst preserving an integrated network of services. It has been used for freight railways in some countries but is particularly attractive for passenger networks when subsidised services make competition between trains serving the same routes difficult or impossible to organise. This report examines experience to date from around the world in competitively tendering rail services. It seeks to draw lessons for effective design of concessions and regulation from both the successful and less successful cases examined. The work is based on detailed examinations by leading experts of the experience of passenger rail concessions in the United Kingdom, Australia, Germany, Sweden and the Netherlands.  It also draws on examples of freight rail concessions in Latin America.

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