Providing rail transport facilities Improving existing railway services Developing railways Developing guided land transport
In 1999, the European Commission proposed several directives with the aim of speeding up the introduction of a genuine, EU-wide railway network. One of the directives law would set the legal framework, while member states would adopt the technical specifications and specialized European bodies would draw up the necessary standards. This would result in a certain harmonization as regards the basic technical requirements for running trains, but would not involve replacing national railway networks with a European one, an operation that would cost a fortune. Another of the directives put forward by the Commission would modify the ground rules set by the EU in 1991 in order to introduce gradually a separation between the maintenance of railway lines, signals and other equipment, on the one hand, and the running of the trains themselves on the other. The aim was to help the railways meet competition from road and air transport more effectively. Another aim would be to create a European railway network for the transport of goods, so that in this particular area trains could run faster and more efficiently. Safety on the railways was covered by national laws which differ from one EU member state to another. Taken as a whole, the European measures proposed provided for a set of controls, the most innovative feature of which was the intervention of an organization that would be independent both of governments and the railway companies. One of the proposals provided for a new system of European licences, authorizing companies to operate on condition that safety is fully guaranteed.
The Encyclopedia of World Problems and Human Potential is a collaboration between UIA and Mankind 2000, started in 1972. It is the result of an ambitious effort to collect and present information on the problems with which humanity is confronted, as well as the challenges such problems pose to concept formation, values and development strategies. Problems included are those identified in international periodicals but especially in the documents of some 60,000 international non-profit organizations, profiled in the Yearbook of International Organizations.
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