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A long-term and clear outlook for the Czech Republic railway network

4 June 2015  •  Author(s): Dan Tok – Minister of Transport of the Czech Republic

Dan Tok – Minister of Transport of the Czech RepublicAs a result of a key decision adopted in the early-1990s to modernise the Czech railway network, the construction plan of the rail transit corridors will be implemented by 2020. It was determined that four rail transit corridors were to be featured on the railway network, establishing the most important domestic and international connections. Most importantly, even now, the demanding parts of the tracks remain to be modernised. Despite these challenges, Dan Tok – Minister of Transport of the Czech Republic – assumes that the majority of these sections will be finalised within the next five years. Here, he takes a look at the future developments for the Czech railway system.

We have to set a clear objective to our further rail transport development policy; a policy that will genuinely be implemented and one that will bring similar benefits as is the case of the rail transit corridors. Approving the ‘Transport Policy of the Czech Republic for 2014-2020 with the Outlook until 2050’, the Czech Republic has signed up for a plan to duly develop the so-called Fast Connections concept. The objective is to provide more capacity to freight transportation, to transfer higher volumes of freight transport from road to rail and to speed up transport in key relations under reasonable financial conditions.

The fast connection concept is very capital intensive. The total costs include not only the construction costs but also the future railway maintenance costs, including the costs of transport operators, passengers and the state if the traffic operation is subsidised. Hence the decision on what the fast connection system should look like must be based on a responsible approach of all stakeholders. We have to define the real needs in relation to the future public funds limits and future users of the fast connection system. Our objectives must be realistic and attainable by 2030 and also by 2050 in compliance with the EU Regulation on the TEN-T network.

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