New legal conditions for Europe to Asia rail freight
Ministers from 37 countries have signed a joint declaration to create ‘a unified set of transparent and predictable’ legal conditions for international rail freight transported between Europe and Asia.
The new agreement, which took place during a ministerial meeting in Genève, will create a common legal regime for rail traffic ‘from the Atlantic to the Pacific’, which will be equivalent to the regimes for competing road, air and water transport.
The planned general conditions of transport for Euro-Asian rail transport, known as GTC EurAsia, would include a common consignment note and 'to the extent possible' a single liability regime.
Ministers claimed that 'further steps should be taken to facilitate the conclusion of Euro-Asian rail transport contracts,’ in recognition of the progress made by the Intergovernmental Organisation for International Carriage by Rail, Organisation for Co-operation between Railways and the International Rail Transport Committee towards the development of a common consignment note.
Operators, associations and other stakeholders have been invited to co-operate in the development of GTC EurAsia, which is supported by the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe.
Signatories include Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Malta, Moldova, Mongolia, Netherlands, Pakistan, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Tajikistan, Turkey, Ukraine and Uzbekistan.
Source: Railway Gazette