This paper compares three broad models of passenger railway reform based on experience from Great Britain, Japan and Sweden. In Great Britain, the rail industry has been vertically separated, with infrastructure, rolling stock and ancillary businesses sold to the private sector. Passenger operations have been horizontally separated and have been transferred to the private sector through franchising. In Japan, the rail industry remains largely vertically integrated, but horizontal separation and private sector involvement have been increased. In Sweden the rail industry has been vertically separated but remains largely horizontally integrated and in public ownership. Tendering for regional and local services has been introduced, with some success for private operators. Detailed studies of three regions (central Britain; the Kinki and Osaka regions of Japan; and southern Sweden) allow examination of the potential impacts of on-the-track competition, off-the-track competition and yardstick competition. Data on demand and supply are compared. A key issue identified is the role for entrepreneurship in the three models. Likely developments in each of the three countries are assessed. This is particularly important for Britain as in about five years time many franchises and long term contracts with the supply industry will be up for renewal and open access competition may be introduced. The paper concludes by examining the advantages and disadvantages of the three models along with a fourth model that combines aspects of the Japanese and Swedish models to permit vertically integrated concessions. For the covering abstract see IRRD E102404.


  • English

Media Info

  • Features: References;
  • Pagination: p. 1-13

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00779130
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Transport Research Laboratory
  • ISBN: 0-86050-316-X
  • Files: ITRD
  • Created Date: Dec 7 1999 12:00AM