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Study findings Swiss remain rail champions of Europe

Intercity passenger train by the Swiss Federal Railways en route between Goldau and Bellinzona

An Intercity passenger train en route between Goldau and Bellinzona


Switzerland’s rail system remains the best in Europe, according to the 2017 European Railway Performance Index.

With a rating of 7.2 overall (out of ten), “Switzerland has excellent intensity of use, notably driven by passenger traffic. It also has a good rating for quality of service and a very good rating for safety,” the reportexternal link, which has been published for the third time by the Boston Consulting Group (BCG), notes.

This puts it ahead of Denmark (6.8 points), Finland (6.6 points) and neighbour Germany (6.1) and allows the country to retain its top spot awarded in previous BCG assessments (2015 and 2012). At the bottom of the list is Bulgaria, with 1.9 points.

Although Switzerland achieved almost full marks in intensity of use, one of the three criteria assessed, it dropped a bit in quality. Here Finland and France were in front (both 2 points out of 3.3, Switzerland 1.8). For security, Denmark, Luxemburg, Great Britain and the Netherlands all fared better than Switzerland.

There was a link between the public cost and the railway system’s performance, the report noted. Switzerland and Austria (also a top tier railway and investor in Alpine tunnels) topped the list here.

+ Read more about railway investment in Switzerland

The report also pointed out that Switzerland was among the countries that got relatively high value for money for its railway system.

The Swiss Federal Railwaysexternal link (SBB in German) said it was happy about their position in the RPI. “It shows that SBB’s efforts to balance network access and maintenance work are bearing fruit. However, it is also an obligation to keep up the hard work in the future,” spokesperson Daniele Pallecchi told in email comments.


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