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The reinforcement of environmentally friendly transport and the associated transfer of traffic from road to rail and waterways by using combined transport is the declared goal of the governments in Germany, Austria and Switzerland, the DACH region. 

The use of combined transport is to be promoted by means of various incentives, the aim of which is to support the competitiveness of CT and the economic viability of intermodal transport and thus reduce transport-related polluting emissions in the long term.

Germany as well as Austria and Switzerland have therefore established well-defined support systems to strengthen combined transport over the last decades and have continuously developed them further.

Subsequently, important information and documents concerning the promotion of combined transport in the DACH region are presented.

Promotion in Germany

The promotion of combined transport supported by transport policy takes place at various levels in Germany. On the one hand, this includes direct funding for the construction and expansion of combined transport handling facilities within the framework of the Federal Railway Infrastructure Expansion Act and the Combined Transport Funding Guidelines and, on the other hand, the upgrading of the transport infrastructure and the increase in competitiveness, e.g. through the current reduction in train path prices.

Guideline for promotion of transshipment facilities for combined transport (KV Förderrichtlinie)

The Federal Government promotes the construction and expansion of transshipment facilities for combined transport as a non-repayable grant to investment expenditure. The aim is to develop infrastructure for the transshipment of goods to the more environmentally friendly modes of rail and inland waterways.

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Promotion in Austria

"Austrian transport Policy sees combined transport as a central approach to solving the problems caused by Austria's geographical and topographical situation in the field of road freight transport. Considering the growing traffic flows in and through Austria, especially by road, Austria has therefore taken early measures to promote environmentally friendly modes of transport such as combined transport".
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Promotion of Interconnecting Railways (ASB) and terminals

"The BMK grants support according to the current guideline or the available means for the construction and expansion of connecting railway facilities as well as for the construction and expansion of transshipment facilities in intermodal transport (land/water-based mode combinations) in order to improve access to the railway and inland waterway systems.

Support for terminal facilities shall take the form of a grant or annuity grants towards eligible investment costs".

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Support for the operation of combined transport

"In order to ensure a market adequate and high quality offer in combined transport and single wagonload transport, the current funding program supports in particular those forms of production (e.g. unaccompanied combined transport and accompanied combined transport) which have already provided a large portion of environmentally friendly rail freight services in Austria.

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Promotion in Switzerland

At the heart of Swiss measures to shift freight to rail are the efforts to shift transit freight traffic through the Alps from road to rail for the long-term protection of the Alpine region.
To this end, various instruments are used in parallel, of which the following are the flanking measures of operational compensation and investments aids as support instruments for combined transport.
The support is based on the Freight Transport Act and the Freight Transport Ordinance in Switzerland.
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Investment aid for the construction/expansion of transshipment facilities

"Private investors, operators and owners can submit an application for investment contributions to the federal government. Applicants bear at least 40% of the costs themselves. Special provisions are valid for CT transshipment facilities of national traffic political importance and facilities located abroad. The funding principles are regulated in the Freight Transport Act and are further explained in a guide for applications for investment grants".

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Compensation for operation in combined transport

The Federation supports the shifting of crossing-Alps freight traffic with contributions to the operation. Those routes in unaccompanied combined transport (UCT) and in accompanied combined transport (rolling road, Rola) which cannot be operated on a cost-efficient basis are eligible.

Within the framework of an offer procedure, the Federation orders from some 30 combined transport providers of crossing-Alps connections from Italy or Tessin to Northern Switzerland, to Germany, France or the Benelux countries and pays operating fees for the services performed. (Text from) 

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