It is possible after all. Switzerland has shown that lorry traffic can be reduced and railfreight activities expanded in their place (page 14). In 2016 the country at the heart of Europe managed to reduce the number of trucks transiting the country to 975,000, the lowest figure for 20 years, the national transport authority has stated. This was thanks to promoting railfreight options and pushing for the intermodal shift from the roads to the rails right at the border, to start off with. 71% of goods transiting the country did so by rail last year.
Some people may put this success down to the relatively manageable size of the country. It’s a fact, however, that the country’s announcements in this field have not been mere lip service. Other countries should recognise this without any ifs or buts, and seek to emulate Switzerland’s performance. Only the clever combination of the modes of transport makes the issue of cargo transportation politically acceptable and will help to enhance the transport and logistics industry’s reputation.