To support the transition to a cleaner, greener and smarter mobility in line with the European Green Deal and the Sustainable and Smart Mobility Strategy, the Commission proposed to revise the TEN-T Regulation of 2013. The revised TEN-T Regulation should put the transport sector on track to cut its emissions by 90%. It responds to the need to increase connectivity across Europe, to foster the resilience of the transport system, to shift more passengers and freight to the sustainable modes of transport and to focus more on sustainable urban mobility.
The Commission made its initial legislative proposal for a revised regulation in December 2021. It aims to make the EU’s transport network safer, more sustainable, faster and more convenient for its users. More people should go take the train, and more goods should be transported by rail, inland waterways, and short sea shipping.
To address the missing links and modernise the entire network, quality standards should be improved. For this, major TEN-T passenger rail lines should allow trains to travel at 160 km/h or faster by 2040. Canals and rivers must ensure good navigation conditions for a minimum number of days per year. Trans-shipment terminals should be improved and piggy-back services should be possible on the TEN-T’s rail network. All major cities should develop sustainable urban action plans to promote zero-emission mobility.
In addition to the core and the comprehensive network, an extended core network will be introduced which should be completed by 2040. The core network corridors should be merged with the rail freight corridors to become European Transport Corridors.
As a reaction to Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine, the Commission made an amended proposal in July 2022. The Commission thereby proposed to extend four corridors to Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova and to accelerate a change towards the European standard railway gauge to help create an interoperable EU railway system.
The legislative process
Following the ‘ordinary legislative procedure’, the Commission’s proposal must be adopted by the European Parliament and the Council. The Council has established its position, its ‘general approach’, in December 2022. The legislative observatory of the European Parliament shows where the proposal is in the legislative procedure and provides a document gateway.
Before adopting its initial proposal, the Commission made an in-depth evaluation of the current TEN-T Regulation. In this process the Commission also asked citizens and interested parties for their views in an open public consultation.
The evaluation found that the TEN-T adds a European perspective to national infrastructure planning and brings benefits beyond single national approaches. It also concluded that changes are needed to reach new political aim, such as those of the European Green Deal and the Sustainable and Smart Mobility Strategy, which were developed after the adoption of the TEN-T Regulation in 2013. Based on the evaluation, and before making its legislative proposal, the Commission conducted an impact assessment which analysed different policy options.