Motion for a Resolution by the Committee on Transport and Tourism

Staying on track: Cross-continent railway travel is an important goal in the European Commission’s mobility strategy, but European national railway companies are not yet a fully integrated network. Given the importance of climate-friendly travel, how can the EU create a reliable and integrated European railway network to make cross-continent railway travel more attractive?

Submitted by: Amir Al-Badie (NL), Ernst van Iterson (NL), Pieke Jongejan (NL), Lisa Lubberman (NL), Aline Rudin (CH), Ahzahito Setyawan (NL), Laura Tudor (NL), Arthur Westerman (NL), Wobbe van der Woude (NL), Berre Wiels (Chairperson, BE)

The European Youth Parliament

  1. Noting with deep concern that only 5,4% of all transportation is done using railways,
  2. Stressing the problem of variety in railways throughout the European Union (EU), by:
    1. having three main types of track gauges,
    2. using different voltages for each Member State,
  3. Referring to the difference of subsidisation in each Member State,
  4. Aiming to reach a positive effect through alternative approaches to rail liberalisation as in the aviation sector,
  5. Taking into account that the European Commission on mobility and transport have already set out a step-by-step strategy in the European Green deal to cut its emissions,
  6. Further noting the action plan set out by the European Union Agency for Railways (ERA) with the goal to make long-distance cross-border rail travel more attractive,
  7. Taking note of Germany’s successful implementation of the Deutschlandticket;
  1. Instructs Member States to improve their railway networks by:
    1. expanding the railroad infrastructure,
    2. increasing the capacity of freight and passenger trains,
    3. enhancing the direct connections between highly populated areas;
  2. Requests Member States to promote positive sides of rail transport by launching media campaigns;
  3. Calls upon Member States to adopt the Magrail system1 upon its availability in Europe;
  4. Instructs the European Commission to expand the mandate of the ERA to act as a connection and information hub, enabling the EU to divide its railway subsidies accurately across all Member States;
  5. Advises Member States to make train travel more accessible by:
    1. making train transportation cheaper through a removal of Value-Added Tax (VAT) on train tickets, 
    2. reaching an agreement allowing train companies to participate in cross-country travel within the EU to make it an integrated network;
  6. Urges the European Commission to execute the plans outlined in the European Green Deal2;
  7. Strongly encourages the European Commission to set minimum taxes for aviation fuels in order to make plane travel less attractive and decrease its environmental impact; 
  8. Invites Member States to encourage railway companies to offer a variety of memberships like the Deutschlandticket to keep these companies economically competitive while offering affordable prices to passengers.
  1. The Magrail system uses A magnetic levitation technology that lifts a train off the track and propels it along the track using magnets.
  2. The EU’s Green Deal is the EU’s main new growth strategy to transition the EU economy to a sustainable economic model.