Containers, containers everywhere
Containers, containers everywhere

The Port of Rotterdam is one of the largest sea ports in the world. Each year it handles around 450 million tonnes of cargo packed into vast numbers of containers. (27.04.2016, Frans Berkelaar)

When the Federal Council makes the case for the NRLA project to Parliament in 1990 and the populace in 1992, it often points to the major sea ports of Rotterdam and Genoa: they are separated by a rail freight corridor some 1,500 kilometres in length, with the NRLA at its heart. Switzerland, the Council argues, stands to benefit from opening up the best route to the sea for overseas trade. The NRLA also includes a series of developments in the Netherlands, Germany and Italy. But after the triumvirate of nations plus Switzerland agree to develop the rail freight corridor in 1996 work proceeds slowly, especially south of Milan.

« The development of rail freight corridors, with a view to improving the competitiveness of rail freight, is occupying an increasingly prominent place on the EU agenda. »

Rotterdam Declaration, Introduction, p. 1, unknown
6.2 billion euros

cost of building NRLA access lines between Karlsruhe and Basel, in addition to 5 billion euros for upgrading the line between Rotterdam and the German border.

41 million tonnes

volume of goods transported across the Swiss Alps every year, 71 per cent of them by rail.

48 million tonnes

volume of goods transported across the Austrian Alps every year.

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