Specifically Táboas says he sees greater collaboration between public and private sectors in the form of PPP funding models. While he admits this is a more risky scenario because of the requirement for greater profits to be made, he says it is one way that the country's future projects can be completed.

Táboas also foresees changes in the way railways are managed in Spain. "With liberalisation we are likely to see a switch of control of local and regional services to local and regional governments," he says.

Inevitably with less investment at home, Spain's railway industry is increasingly looking abroad for new orders. Several sessions at BCN Rail are highlighting the investment opportunities in Algeria, Brazil, India, Russia and Turkey. Táboas also pointed to the success of a Spanish consortium which won the contract to equip the Medina - Mecca high-speed line in Saudi Arabia as a sign of the where the industry must head in the future. "As a consequence of our investment we have built a sector with specific expertise that can now be taken abroad, because if you cannot sell in your home market you do not have any chance of doing so abroad," he says.