Joan Amorós, FERRMED chairman

Joan Amorós explains the key solutions needed to achieve a modal share of 30% for rail transportation in Europe after a study made by 25 experts over three years of the entire European transport network.
Sat 21/05/2022 by by Pierre Escodo
© Eurofresh Distribution

What are the aims of the “FERRMED Study of Traffic and Modal Shift Optimisation in the EU”?

The objective of the study is to recommend efficient solutions to reach the goal set by the European Commission that 30% of goods be transported by rail by 2030. It identifies the major transportation channels in which new train transportation facilities could be integrated with greater efficiency. For example, the major traffic lines in Spain are the Mediterranean Corridor and the Ebro valley (especially the Barcelona–Zaragoza and Madrid–Basque Region sections). Between 9,000 and 12,000 trucks circulate daily along the Mediterranean Corridor.

What is the current state of play, according to the FERRMED study?

Europe transports 18% of its merchandise by train; in Spain, it is only 4%. Today’s investments in the railway network by EU states are made without socio-economic criteria. If this continues, it will be impossible to reach the objective of a 30% share of transportation. Due to their lack of flexibility, trains are too inefficient for most merchandise like agrifood products or manufactured goods, which are usually distributed with “0 stock”. Significant improvements are required both in terms of the capacity and the flexibility of the railway. Several new multimodal terminals are also needed between the main origin and destination stations.

The study identifies the major transportation channels where new train transportation facilities could be integrated with greater efficiency.

How does the FERRMED study provide innovative solutions?

FERRMED recommends the use of a new system, “+FIRRST”, with three levels of implementation in the most crowded sections of the main logistics corridors in Europe, where 65% of the entire traffic load of the core network is concentrated in just 26% of the European network (18,000 out of 70,000 km in total).

Level 1: This requires the use of interconnected and electrified wagons capable of combining refrigerated semi-trailers and containers on the same train, for which all major rail interconnections must be fully electrified.

Level 2: This involves the use of “point-to-point” trains, going from origin to final destination with the option of additional trains (Sai) that stop at established intermediate multimodal stations for road-rail loading/unloading (freight trains operating like the passenger trains).

Level 3: This level foresees investments in additional trains able to stop “on-demand” at any multimodal point situated on their line. The trains (Sar) could stop at additional stations based on real-time demand. This is a particularly suitable solution for F&V transportation.


-Current president of FERRMED

-Executive secretary general of R+D+4i Euro-Action Group Association

-President of Fundació Occitano Catalana

-Nissan Motor Iberica

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