Vice-President Siim Kallas website

European Commission Mobility and Transport website

Austria, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Croatia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovak Republic and Slovenia sign agreement towards the Single European Sky

Austria, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Croatia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovak Republic and Slovenia have signed an agreement to create the "Functional Airspace Block – Central Europe" (FAB CE) an important step towards achieving the Single European Sky. Slowly the political objectives of the Single European Sky legislation adopted in 2004 is coming into reality with Member States taking the necessary steps to ensure the creation of functional airspace blocks, or FABs. Today's agreement marks the realisation of the fourth FAB in Europe. The other European Union Member States are expected to sign similar agreements in the coming yea

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The 2011 TEN-T Calls for Proposal Info Day

The 2011 TEN-T Calls for Proposal Info Day will take place at the Borschette Conference Centre in Brussels on 29 June 2011. The event will present the priorities for the 2011 TEN-T Multi-Annual Call, which will focus on ERTMS (European Rail Traffic Management System), RIS (River Information Services) and MoS (Motorways of the Sea). In addition the Info Day will provide participants with practical information about how to prepare a successful proposal, as well as other background information relevant to the process.

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Commission signs Memorandum of Cooperation with the International Civil Aviation Organisation

European Commission Vice-President Siim Kallas has signed, together with the Hungarian State Secretary for Infrastructure Pál Völner, a Memorandum of Cooperation providing a framework for enhanced cooperation with the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO). The Memorandum provides the basis for stronger EU involvement with ICAO.

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Ground breaking agreement on civil aviation safety between the EU and the US enters into force

The agreement on Cooperation in the Regulation of Civil Aviation Safety between the European Union and the United States entered into force on 1 May 2011, which will boost safety and create opportunities for businesses. This agreement means less cumbersome technical and administrative procedures for the recognition of certificates and approvals on both sides of the Atlantic and opens the way to progressively reaching the same level of mutual trust in other areas of safety.

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Commission advises that the lifting of 'duty-free' liquid restrictions be deferred

Vice-President of the Commission, Siim Kallas, responsible for transport advised EU Member States to defer for a limited period the removal of restrictions on the carriage of duty free liquids in hand luggage, originally due on 29 April 2011. In recent days, a growing number of Member States decided to maintain the ban on carrying duty free liquids purchased in third countries beyond this date. The Commission advice is issued in order to avoid a situation which would not have facilitated travel but rather caused confusion for passengers. The Commission will conduct a review of the situation together with Member States and consult with the United States as one of the key destinations of flights from the EU.

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Facilitating the exchange of rail data – Frequently asked questions

The European Commission has adopted a regulation on standards in the field of telematics applications for rail passenger services. These standards, known to the rail sector as "technical specifications for interoperability" (TSI) relate to the subsystem "telematics applications for passengers" (TAP) of the trans-European rail system and define how stakeholders must interact with travel-related data in the field of rail transport.

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Background

Commission to push for pan European passenger rail ticketing

The European Commission has adopted a new regulation to facilitate pan European rail journey planning and ticketing, by forcing a standardisation of rail passenger data on fares and timetables. This means that key reservation and ticketing information will be inter-operable and can be exchanged between rail companies throughout the EU as well as ticket vendors. The Commission will in 2012 bring forward a complementary legal measure requiring rail operators to bring their IT systems and practices into line, so that the standardised data can in practice be transferred between operators. These measures lay the technical foundations to allow a new generation of European rail journey planners and ticketing systems to start to emerge on market.

European Commission Vice-President Siim Kallas, responsible for transport, said: "If we are serious about getting people onto rail, and particularly about having rail compete with air travel over middle distances then we need to offer rail passengers the seamless planning and ticketing offers that match the airlines. We want to make it as easy, in the future, to book a rail ticket from Barcelona to Brussels or Berlin to Bratislava as it is to book a corresponding flight. Making common timetabling and fare information available to operators is a significant first step, but it is just the start of a much bigger push to make pan European rail planning and ticketing a reality."

What is the current situation?

Railways have evolved with a national focus. Today this manifests itself in widely differing booking systems, based on data which is processed in different ways and is largely not interchangeable. The result, for passengers, is very limited possibilities to book rail tickets cross border (with the exception of a small number of major international direct cross border rail routes). This is unlike the situation in competing modes, eg the airline industry which has evolved serving mainly cross border routes and where the journey planning and ticketing are widely and easily available on a pan-European basis (built largely on the use of a common central reservation system Amadeus).

What are the proposals?

The new EU technical regulation adopted today - Telematics Applications for Passenger Services – will force the standardisation of data relating to timetables and fares. This is the basic data underpinning journey planning, reservation and ticketing systems, for example data relating to: what kind of train is running, when the train stops, where it stops, what kind of accommodation is available eg first and second class seats; how many unreserved seats are available, tariff structures etc. Importantly, the Regulation also legally requires operators to make data related to timetabling available in the public domain, as well as to make fare information available to agreed partners.

In 2012, the Commission will bring forward a complementing measure, to guide all railway companies and ticket vendors in adapting their IT data systems so that they are in line with EU wide standards and data can in practice be exchanged and used by all operators in different rail booking and ticketing systems throughout Europe.

Taken together these measures lay the technical foundations for a new generation of pan European rail passenger journey planners and ticketing tools to start to come on the market in the following years.

What happens next?

The Commission is in the process of assessing the need for further measures to remove barriers that are holding back the development of cross border rail and, more broadly, multi modal travel planning and ticketing.

The Commission has also recently launched (April 1st 2011) a public consultation "Towards a European Multi-Modal Journey Planner" (Consultation period: 1/04/2011 – 27/05/2011) which will also feed into this process. Click here fore more details

The European Commission is organising in Lyons on 6 June 2011 a major Conference on Intelligent Transport in Europe where, in a key note speech European Commission Vice President Kallas, responsible for Transport, will set out in more detail proposals for next steps in this area.

[Telematics applications for passenger services]

[Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS)]

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