Every year in June, the UIC Combined Transport Group and the UIRR operators hold their statutory meetings back to back as they also serve as preparation to the General Assembly of their common work platform: Interunit.
Under the Presidency of Eric Peetermans (CTG Chairman) the Interunit General Assembly - which gathers the top level management of the UIRR and of the combined transport Railways - held a fruitful discussion about the current economic crisis and how to survive it. With average volume decreases of 20% to 30% and fierce road competition the situation commands immediate action.
It is in that context that the railways and their combined transport customers issued a position paper aimed at national and supranational authorities. In short, the Interunit members require medium term and short term actions mainly around the issues of infrastructure and capacity with a view to offer the market enough flexibility so that irreversible modal shift away from rail doesn’t happen.
Following the suggestions of Eduard Laverny, SNCF, and of Andreas Schultz, DB Intermodal, railways and operators also agreed to work on a bilateral basis on a range of business issues in order to prepare strong combined transport partnerships for when the economic recovery begins to materialise.
In agreement with the Interunit Statutes, the General Assembly closed with a series of nominations. Mr Berenyi was nominated to succeed Mr Peetermans as President of Interunit, Mr Burkhardt will replace Mr Muzio at the head of the Technical Committee and Ms Géhénot will succeed Mr Colle at the Secretariat.