Freight Transport

Arnold Berndt
Arnold Berndt

Encouraging the shift of freight transport from road to rail

The Confederation establishes general conditions to ensure the sustainable development of Swiss rail freight transport as well as efficient cooperation between the various means of transport. It therefore makes capital expenditure contributions for the construction and operation of suitable transhipment facilities for combined transport and sidings. It also works to ensure that facilities are optimally linked to the railway, road and port infrastructure and that they are further developed in line with the rail freight transport concept. Finally, the Confederation makes capital expenditure contributions for technical innovations and, together with the cantons, handles orders for freight transport on the narrow-gauge railway network.

In line with the constitutional mandate, transalpine freight traffic is to be shifted from road to rail. The Data Competence Centre for Transalpine Freight Transport gathers and analyses the necessary data required for reporting on the road-to-rail transfer process (road-to-rail transfer reports and semester reports). By providing financial compensation for unaccompanied combined transport (i.e. the transport of containers, swap bodies and semi-trailers) and the transport of entire lorries (so-called rolling road) by rail, we help to accelerate and optimise the road-to-real transfer process.

The heavy goods vehicle charge (HGVC) is one of the main regulatory instruments of Swiss transport policy. The Freight Transport Section’s HGVC competence centre works with other federal offices to determine possible adaptations that may be needed to maintain the effectiveness of the HGVC as a means of encouraging the transfer of freight transport from road to rail.