Less and less freight on the tracks 26/05/23

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Source: https://www.rsi.ch/news/ticino-e-grigioni-e-insubria/Sempre-meno-merci-sui-binari-16276702.html


(Google translation in EN)


Less and less freight on the tracks


>>> watch video presentation by Il Quotidiano: https://www.rsi.ch/play/tv/redirect/detail/16276939

In 2022 Hupac recorded a drop in shipments of 1.8% - Among the causes the energy price increase and infrastructural problems, especially in Germany

With the creation of Alptransit there has been a lot of talk about the transfer of goods from road to rail in recent years. However, the data provided by Hupac, specialized in combined transport, is not comforting. With 1'104'000 rail shipments, 2022 ended with a 1.8% decrease compared to the previous year. And the turnover decreased by more than 2%. For Hupac, the market recovery of the previous year collided with a hostile international context.

"If we look at the main macroeconomic factors - the financial director of Hupac Benedetta Masciari tells CSR -, there were a beginning of the year where the Covid rules, especially for quarantine, were different in the different states, then there was the The war started in Ukraine in February and this led to an explosion in energy prices… Added to all this was the strength of the franc which put the industry under pressure”.

The price of diesel has grown less than that of electricity, and has thus created a problem of competitiveness, the danger is the return to road freight traffic. “Going back to rubber is not the future anyway, we are instead a sustainable business. We all see the traffic on our roads, moreover there is a lack of drivers... consequently the best solution is precisely that of the short sections made on the road and the long ones with the railway" adds Masciari.

Infrastructures: good in Italy, the problems are in Germany

For this, however, Hupac needs infrastructure stability: the Chiasso-based company has in fact now developed its network throughout Europe and operates with 150 trains a day.

In the south, in Italy, things are going well, with the Confederation supporting the development of the terminals in the north of the country, hand in hand with funding from Rome. The bottlenecks, on the other hand, are to be found in the north of Switzerland: the construction sites on the railway network in Germany. "The problems arise with the trains that go north of Basel, towards the ports of the North going up the Rhine Valley. The works on the infrastructure will take place over the next few years, last April, for example, they started with a large building site which led to the interruption of the whole chain”.

A joke, if we think about how much Switzerland has invested in Alptransit. And in the coming years, there may also be competition from electric trucks. A sector still full of unknowns, both technical and human resources, such as the shortage of drivers.

Quote/Red. MM