Compromise on the 3rd Railway Package

Berlin, Germany – Following difficult and protracted negotiations, the Federal Minister of Transport, Building and Urban Affairs, Wolfgang Tiefensee, as President-in-Office of the EU Council, 2007-06-20 reached a compromise on the 3rd Railway Package with the European Parliament’s negotiators.

Commenting on this, Mr Tiefensee said: "I will champion this compromise package. If the EU Transport Council gives its approval, this will be a great success for the railways in Europe. This applies both to the removal of technical and bureaucratic barriers and to consumers’ rights in rail transport. We are paving the way for a uniform European train driver’s licence and the opening-up of international passenger services. Regarding consumers, it will be possible, among other things, to institutionalize basic rights of non-discriminatory access for persons with reduced mobility. Likewise, there are to be binding rules governing compensation for delays to international services. Appropriate transitional periods have been agreed to take into consideration the considerable investment efforts being made to modernize railway infrastructure, especially in the Member States in Eastern Europe. The Council Presidency and the European Parliament’s negotiators will lobby for adoption of the compromise package, which is the outcome of lengthy negotiations. The aim is to successfully conclude the dossier under the German Presidency."