Nis, 13 October – Director of the Transport Community Permanent Secretariat Mr Matej Zakonjšek delivered opening remarks at the scientific-expert conference Railcon in Nis. The conference, which has been delivering top-notch expertise on rail in the Western Balkans for the past twenty years, gathered scientists and experts from the region, to observe the ongoing changes and suggest directions for further development of rail in Serbia and the region.
“We are all aware of the benefits that brings the rail transport – among key ones are: the environmental protection, cuting the travel time, less costly, and these are strong arguments that made us treat the rail sector with high priority, as well as keep it high on our agendas. I truly believe that we will bring the rail back on track again, by positioning it at the level that can compete with road transport – and this is the only way to increase the rail share in overall transport sector. Despite all mentioned benefits, only 7% of passengers and 11% of goods/freight use rail services in the EU. The situation is much worse in the Western Balkans, where the infrastructure is far from the desired level. The average speed is 50% less than its projected speed (example: a trip from Belgrade – Skopje is 10.5h it should have been 5h). Due to all mentioned issues, we should give our maximum in bringing the rail sector at the desired level – aiming towards joining the EU rail market,” Zakonjšek said.
Scientific-Expert Conference Railcon Program can be downloaded on the following link.