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Implementation of EU legislation on rail liberalisation in Belgium, France, Germany and the Netherlands. NBB Working Paper No. 221, March 2012

Deville, Xavier and Verduyn, Fabienne (2012) Implementation of EU legislation on rail liberalisation in Belgium, France, Germany and the Netherlands. NBB Working Paper No. 221, March 2012. [Working Paper]

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    Abstract

    This study provides a detailed and easy-to read overview of the railway liberalisation in Belgium and the three neighbouring countries. The European Union's liberalisation Directives are often complex and are implemented in very specific ways in the different Member States. The analysis goes into some detail about the Commission's underlying motives and economic theories for letting network industries, which had previously been regarded as natural monopolies, convert into competitive enterprises with the separation of infrastructure from operations. The study takes a look at the impact of the European rail liberalisation Directives in Belgium and its neighbouring countries - France, Germany and the Netherlands. There are considerable variations in the way in which the Directives are applied. It is reflected in the way in which the separation of the infrastructure and the transport services within the railway companies was carried out, and in the degree of opening of the market in freight and passenger transport. The analysis shows that the dominance of the former monopolists in the different Member States means that private rail operators face major obstacles. The financial analysis of the railway companies reveals wide variations in economic performance. The combination of better balance sheet figures and a bigger domestic market means that some major players in Europe are financially better off, giving them superiority over the smaller railway companies. This raises the question whether these circumstances will ultimately lead to distortion of competition.

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    Item Type: Working Paper
    Uncontrolled Keywords: Rail; liberalisation; subsidies; debt.
    Subjects for non-EU documents: EU policies and themes > Policies & related activities > competition policy
    EU policies and themes > Policies & related activities > transport policy
    Countries > Belgium
    Countries > France
    Countries > Germany
    Countries > Netherlands
    Subjects for EU documents: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Series: UNSPECIFIED
    ["eprint_fieldname_eusries" not defined]: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Annual Reports: UNSPECIFIED
    Series: Series > National Bank of Belgium (Brussels) > Working Papers
    Depositing User: Phil Wilkin
    Official EU Document: No
    Language: English
    Date Deposited: 08 May 2012 12:42
    Number of Pages: 160
    Last Modified: 08 May 2012 12:42
    URI: http://aei.pitt.edu/id/eprint/34882

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