Last June the EC initiated infringement proceedings against 24 member
states that had failed to fully implement the FRP, but more than a year
on it says the majority still have not fully complied. The latest
criticisms highlight a number of recurrent shortcomings, including the
lack of independence of the infrastructure manager in relation to train
operators, inadequate implementation of provisions on track access
charging, and the failure to establish independent regulatory bodies
with adequate powers to remedy competition problems.
Adopted by the
EC in 2000, the FRP is intended to create the conditions for a
liberalised railfreight market where any operator in possession of the
relevant licenses can gain access to national railway networks. A
deadline of March 2003 was set for 15 member states to transpose the
FRP into their legal systems, with the eight new member states due to
adopt the measures in May 2004.