Brussels, 3 June 2010
Transport: Commission requires Denmark, Lithuania, Luxembourg and the Netherlands to ensure opening of their international passenger transport markets
The European Commission has today sent a reasoned opinion to Denmark, Lithuania, Luxembourg and the Netherlands for failing to transpose Directive 2007/58/EC providing for the opening of the international rail passenger transport market. All four Member States have two months to comply with the request.
The EU rules
Under Directive 2007/58/EC1, all railway undertakings that have a licence and the required safety certificates shall be able to operate international services as of 1 January 2010. To create realistic economic conditions to develop the services, this includes the right for international trains to perform cabotage, which is picking up and setting down passengers at stations located in the same Member State.
Member States were required to transpose Directive 2007/58/EC before 4 June 2009, after which they had to inform the Commission of the laws, regulations and administrative provisions enacted at a national level in order to comply with the European rules.
The reason for formal request ("reasoned opinion")
Denmark, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands have not yet communicated to the Commission any national measures to transpose the directive. Lithuania has communicated only partial transposition measures.
The practical effect of non-transposition
Failure to transpose the EU directive means that European rail undertakings, in spite of their legal entitlement under EU legislation, are not granted the right of access to the rail infrastructure in the Member States concerned for the purpose of operating an international passenger service. This limits business opportunities to rail undertakings and infrastructures managers and their capacity to provide new, innovative, customer-oriented, safe and environmentally-friendly services to passengers.
Directive 2007/58/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 October 2007 amending Council Directive 91/440/EEC on the development of the Community's railways and Directive 2001/14/EC on the allocation of railway infrastructure capacity and the levying of charges for the use of railway infrastructure (OJEU L315, 3.12.2007).