Austrian Railway Policy

Railways: an environmentally friendly transport mode is investing sustainably for the future

Austrian transport policy is shaped by EU-wide legislation and by international, national, regional and local rules. It is guided predominantly by the principle of "sustainable mobility".

One of the most important aims underlying this principle is the desire to strengthen Austria as a business centre. The most pressing imperative is thus to create a transport infrastructure which meets Austria's requirements and makes the country as accessible as possible, so that its businesses have easier access to markets and can be sure of being competitive. Targeted development of transport infrastructure – and of railway infrastructure in particular – is thus especially important. Over and above this each transport mode should and must be aware of where its strengths lie.

But we must not forget that present and future transport problems can only be overcome by coordinated effort on the part of all forms of transport. In this coordinated effort by all transport modes the railway will play an important part in guaranteeing Austria's sustainability as a business centre.

The European Union (EU) is seeking to harmonise technical rules in the railway sector Europe-wide, with a view to guaranteeing the interoperability of international rail traffic. To that end, work is under way on the preparation of "technical specifications for interoperability" (TSIs) which will allow trains to use all sectors of the EU railway system, moving seamlessly from one country's network to another.