Publication details

Competition in the railway passenger market in the Czech Republic

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Year of publication 2014
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source Research in Transportation Economics
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Economics and Administration

Field Economy
Keywords railway; competition; open access
Description This paper describes the development of competition in the Czech railway passenger market. The vertical separation of infrastructure and services occurred in 2003. Open access for commercial passenger services is allowed, and it was utilised in 2011 when the incumbent on the key rail route Prague-Ostrava was challenged by a new operator; a third operator entered the route at the end of 2012. This resulted in an intensive on-track competition with tariff declines and service improvements. With the exception of the Prague-Ostrava route, the operation of other passenger lines is classified as a public service obligation and is subsidised from public budgets. Long-distance services are organised by the Ministry of Transport, and the usual form of procurement used to be a direct awarding of services to the incumbent. However, this is changing as competitive tendering is being used more frequently. Competitive tendering is also theoretically possible in regional transport, but in 2009, regional transport authorities decided to directly award all contracts to the incumbent for 10-15 years, effectively closing regional markets for that period.
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