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EXCITING: UIC Takes Stock of Activities and Sets Targets for 2023

EXCITING: UIC Takes Stock of Activities and Sets Targets for 2023
photo: PKP S.A./UIC Takes Stock of Activities and Sets Targets for 2023
23 / 12 / 2022

Summing up activities to date and setting challenges and targets for 2023 were among the topics discussed at the Executive Board and General Assembly meetings of the International Union of Railways (UIC) held in Paris on 7 and 8 December. Krzysztof Mamiński, President of the UIC and Chairman of the Board of PKP S.A., chaired the meetings.

At the meeting, the International Union of Railways members discussed, among other things, the implementation of the UIC's first 3-year programme (2020-2022), which includes strategic areas to position the UIC as a reference technical organisation for the entire sector worldwide. These areas are: promoting rail transport worldwide, creating innovation through projects, promoting sustainable and zero-emission transport and further developing the UIC as a technical platform to meet the members' needs. The International Union of Railways was also successfully involved in the EU-Rail Joint Undertaking initiative through its participation in the System Pillar and the Innovation Pillar. The centenary anniversary of the International Union of Railways was also an important event of the past year, helping to develop new opportunities to promote the sector and its contribution to the decarbonisation of transport. The organisation also demonstrated a rapid and effective response to crises, most notably Russia's aggression against Ukraine and the ongoing military crisis across Poland's border.

"Our swift action, which led to the suspension of Russian and Belarusian members of the organisation, avoided destabilising the functioning of the association. We also established a humanitarian task force, which has been very successful in sharing best practices to provide effective assistance to Ukrainian refugees. In addition, we launched an energy task force to work together on sharing technical solutions to the current crisis. Today, the UIC General Assembly, with the strong support of the vast majority of the organisation's members, decided to ratify the decision to suspend members from Russia and Belarus from the structures of our association. With our decision, we prove once again that there is no place in our community for aggressors who break international law and do not respect the basic and most important values – unity, solidarity and development cooperation – on which our railway community is based," said Krzysztof Mamiński.

The UIC meeting in Paris also identified future strategic goals and developments as defined in the organisation's work programme for 2023-2025, as well as those related to the current geopolitical situation in the context of the war in Ukraine. UIC members are convinced that rail must play a leading role in decarbonising the transport sector globally and regionally. It is the most sustainable and the only mass transport currently ready to effectively address our climate challenges. Hence, it must be placed at the heart of the development of future mobility and global logistics chains.

"For this to happen, the rail community must intensify its efforts to further promote the clear advantages of rail in the public discourse and to make it more attractive and competitive in the eyes of current and potential users as well as all decision-makers. We want more people to travel by rail, more companies to transport their goods by rail and more people to consider a career in the industry. However, we also need to show that the potential of rail is ready to compete with other modes of transport. We have a lot of work ahead of us to unlock the rail's full potential. We need to improve our cost efficiency through digitisation and innovation, solve interoperability problems and capacity constraints, and, above all, we need to invest in modern infrastructure and rolling stock," added Krzysztof Mamiński.

The UIC president also referred to the conclusions of meetings with UIC regional presidents, including the heads of the Japanese, French and Hungarian railways, and stressed that ambitious work programmes for each region will be implemented in 2023. "The permanent presence of the UIC in the most active regions will enable better coordination and effective implementation of the programme to make the ambitious visions for the railways' development in the regions a reality. The needs of the region's members and the development of inter-regional cooperation remain my absolute priority, and I firmly believe that our new UIC work programme will play a key role in unlocking the development and innovation potential of the rail sector globally," Krzysztof Mamiński mentioned.

Source: PKP S.A. Press Releases