Elimination of boundaries for the clustering of cargo flows by rail
From 2018 to 2019
The move towards a modal shift is one of the key points of Flanders’ mobility policy. Within this study, we analyse whether it is opportune to support companies, by means of a limited subsidy, to cluster their cargo flows, before transporting them by rail. The study consists of 3 phases. At first, we look into the modalities of a similar kind of subsidy that was granted in 2012 in the Netherlands, but was discontinued after a negative evaluation. To this end, we interview the commissioner and the beneficiaries of the subsidy, and we conduct a literature review to other similar mechanisms in other countries. The second phase of the study focuses on Flanders. At first, we will map the current situation in terms of infrastructure and logistic organization. For the latter, we will conduct interviews with all relevant actors (forwarders and operators), in order to uncover any existing boundaries that might hinder the clustering of cargo flows by rail. After that, we investigate how these boundaries could possibly be eliminated, and if a limited subsidy (which would fall under the European de minimis regulation for state aids) would contribute to this purpose. We conduct an impact assessment of this possible subsidy in relation to the Flemish companies, the state, and society. Finally, the judicial aspects of this subsidy will also be analysed. TML is project leader of the study and will coordinate the project. We will also take the lead in the first task (literature review and analysis of the Dutch case), support task leader TRI-VIZOR in the second task (possible implementation in Flanders), and support the project partner in the judicial part of the study.