Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.
Factsheet for measure EU-2022-38/2928 – measures in European Union
|Country||European Union , applies eu-wide (or beyond)|
|Time period||Open ended, started on 14 September 2022|
|Type||Other initiatives or policies|
Responses to inflation
– Support for energy bills
|Author||Barbara Surdykowska and Eurofound|
|Measure added||17 September 2022 (updated 28 September 2022)|
On 9 September 2022 the the Community of European Railway and Infrastructure Companies (CER), together with the European Rail Freight Association (ERFA), called on the European Commission and Member States to develop a strategy to protect the European Union's modal shift targets and ensure uninterrupted, affordable energy supplies for rail transport. Both employers' organizations indicated that the ongoing crisis on European energy markets, caused by the Russian invasion of Ukraine, will also have a significant impact on rail transport, despite its energy efficiency. This could significantly limit not only freight transport but also access for EU citizens to passenger transport.
CER brings together 75 railway and infrastructure companies from the European Union, candidate countries (North Macedonia and Turkey), as well as from the Western Balkans, Norway and Switzerland. ERFA represents 30 rail freight carriers that operate across the entire European network.
The social partners indicate that the EU's Green Deal climate neutrality target foresees a greater role for railways, as set out in the modal shift targets in the EU's sustainable and smart mobility strategy. However energy accounts for around 10-20% of the cost base of railway companies and electricity prices for rail freight and passenger services doubled between 2021 and 2022, with prices up to ten times higher in some countries. In their view, rail operators will not be able to maintain their ticket prices and freight rates unless support measures such as energy price caps and state aid are introduced. They therefore call on the European Commission:
On the other hand, the Member States are called upon:
|Applies to all workers||
Sector specific set of companies
||Applies to all citizens|
No special funding required
Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:
|Trade unions||Employers' organisations|
|Role||No involvement||Agreed (outcome) incl. social partner initiative|
|Form||Not applicable||Direct consultation outside a formal body|
Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:
It is a stand-alone initiative of two European sector employers' organizations. At present, there is no reaction from the European trade union sector organization (ETF).
Employers' organizations support their own initiative. There is a lack of knowledge about trade union reactions.
This case is sector-specific
|Economic area||Sector (NACE level 2)|
|H - Transportation And Storage||H49 Land transport and transport via pipelines|
This case is occupation-specific
|Occupation (ISCO level 2)|
|Labourers in mining, construction, manufacturing and transport|
Eurofound (2022), European rail transport threatened by soaring electricity prices, measure EU-2022-38/2928 (measures in European Union), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin, https://static.eurofound.europa.eu/covid19db/cases/EU-2022-38_2928.html
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Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.