More than 200 delegates from 30 countries representing all parts of the world are meeting on 23 – 25 June in Istanbul for the 6th World Congress on Railway Security (UIC Security 2010) jointly organised by UIC and Turkish Railways (TCDD). This leading international railway event brings together major players involved in rail and transport security issues: railway security managers, representatives of international organisations, rail supply industry, universities and research bodies.
The World Congress was opened today by speeches delivered by a number of high-level speakers including UIC Chairman Mr Yoshio Ishida and Director General Mr Jean-Pierre Loubinoux, the President and Chairman of Turkish Railways Mr Süleyman Karaman (also Chairman of the UIC Regional Assembly for the Middle-East) and Mr Mustapha Firat, Deputy Under Secretary of State for Transport. Mr Binali Yildirim, Turkish Minister of Transport and Communications welcomed the delegates in a live broadcast from Ankara.
All speakers have highlighted the strategic importance of maintaining a high-level of security which takes into account the impact on railway operation, quality of service, company results and on the image of rail transport. Turkish Minister Mr Yildirim insisted on the fact that “security is an international issue, even if routes are national and the best road is a road that you already know, meaning where you feel secure”. In this perspective international cooperation is an important goal to achieve, in particular for Turkey, a country with numerous international connections by land, sea and air. Mr Mustapha Firat, Deputy Under Secretary of State for Transport added that the priority for customers is to reach their destination in safe conditions. For Turkey the project of recreating the Silk Road includes the challenge of sustainable transport security.
According to UIC Chairman Yoshio Ishida, “it is extremely important to share common values between railways also in the security issue and to take advantage of Members’ experience to optimise the security level and limit recurring incidents”. He is happy to see that “UIC is now well re-organised and able to handle this global issue efficiently”.
Mr Süleyman Karaman, President and CEO of TCDD presented the ambitious plans to develop a highly-efficient railway network to benefit passengers (high speed) and freight customers (freight corridors) for Turkey taking into account all the challenges in terms of environment and security. He underlined the importance to implement adequate polices at national level and share best experiences between countrıes.
UIC Director General Jean-Pierre Loubinoux is convinced that “railway companies have to invest even more energy time and resources in security issues – alongside its traditional activities – to avoid citizens, customers and staff facing disruption, threats or even danger in the course of their daily business”. He added: “we all have a responsibility as members of society and as responsible businessmen and women”.
In this respect “cooperation and a deep-rooted partnership between all involved, both nationally and internationally play a fundamental role in making all parties work together and more efficiently”.
In order to reflect the growing importance of railway security the Security Division (led by Jacques Colliard, Head of Unit) has been integrated at UIC level into the new Fundamental Values Department also covering safety, sustainable development, research coordination and expertise development.
Mr Loubinoux warmly thanked Mr Tadeusz Kaczmarek, Chairman of the UIC Security Platform, for all the positive results achieved by the Platform under his chair. He announced that Mr Moha Khaddour, currently Vice Chairman, had been nominated as the new chairman of the Security Platform by UIC General Assembly held on 10 of June in Tokyo. He extended all the best wishes to the new chairman.
Mr Tadeusz Kaczmarek presented what he considers to be priorities for the international action at UIC level:
- Spread knowledge and experience,
- Promote a culture of security, prevention and education
- Develop efficient arguments in favour of investment,
- Increase efforts to mobilise people at worldwide, regional, national and local level
- Work towards a strategic proposal for the benefit of society and our companies.
More information at the end of the conference on Friday 25 June.