On 16 November 2016, the Federal Council presented the proposed Organisation of Rail Infrastructure (OBI) legislation, which aims to further strengthen the Swiss railway system. The Federal Council believes that the OBI will increase transparency, reduce the likelihood of discrimination, improve efficiency, and thereby help to bring about long-term improvements to the present system.
The proposal of the Federal Council, which is based on the recommendations published in 2013 by a group of experts convened by the then Head of DETEC, also provides for changes in the field of train path allocation. To strengthen its independence, it was recommended that the ownership of trasse.ch be transferred to the confederation and that the train path allocation body be enshrined in law. The Federal Council therefore proposes that trasse.ch be transferred to an independent federal agency subject to public law. Moreover, the authority of the path allocation body will be strengthened to ensure that its ability to carry out its task independently and without discrimination remains beyond doubt.
trasse.ch welcomes the proposal. We support the general objective of guaranteeing discrimination-free access and ensuring compatibility with the rules of our European neighbours. We also agree with the intention of the train path allocation body to create a statutory basis with the legal mandate and to improve the body's effectiveness by increasing its powers. In particular, we note with satisfaction that the future train path allocation body will be based on trasse.ch. However, we consider transferring the collection of track access charges to be less useful, because the additional administrative effort will be disproportionate to the gain in transparency.