Updates

Event | 10 September 2014
Improving travel time reliability brings tangible economic benefits
   
  Reducing uncertainty for travellers about the time it will take to reach their destination should become a policy priority for authorities. Research shows that the cost of unreliable travel may rival that of congestion, a topic on which transport policy has traditionally focused. This is the key message of a presentation by International Transport Forum (ITF) senior economist Jari Kauppila at the ITS World Congress in Detroit (7-11 September, Cobo Center, Detroit MI).

Shifting the focus from reducing travel time to reducing its variability implies a move from policies to build new infrastructure to better management of existing infrastructure, and to information provision for the users to enable better planning of the journey.

Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) play a key role in tapping the benefits of increased reliability of transport systems. A study on the A6 motorway in France showed that effective traffic management could reduce average travel time for a 20km long section by 12% and the buffer needed to account for variability by 45%. “Reliability represents a major network characteristic that should be recognised when considering investment options”, says Kauppila. “Reliability should therefore be incorporated into cost-benefit assessment.”

Go to more information on the ITS session (external link)

Go to Media Release on Improving Travel Time Reliability PDF
 
Environment | 01 September 2014
The cost of air pollution: Health impacts of road transport
   
   

Outdoor air pollution kills more than 3.5 million people a year globally, far more than was previously estimated.
Air pollution has now become the biggest environmental cause of premature death, overtaking poor sanitation and a lack of clean drinking water. In most OECD countries, the death toll from heart and lung diseases caused by air pollution is much higher than the one from traffic accidents.
The report "The cost of air pollution: Health impacts of road transport", presented by OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría at the ITF's Annual Summit on 21 May 2014, calls for a phasing out of tax incentives for diesel among its recommendations.

Go to the OECD report on "The cost of air pollution: Health impacts of road transport" (external link)

Go to ITF work on health impacts of cycling

Go to ITF work on health impacts of walking
 
Environment | 12 August 2014
ITF pledges support to UN High-Level Advisory Group on Sustainable Transport
   
  United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (photo) has announced the creation of a High-Level Advisory Group on Sustainable Transport. Over the next three years, the Group will develop recommendations on sustainable transport for the UN Secretary-General that are actionable on global, national, local and sector levels. The recommendations are intended to feed as transport-specific initiatives into a comprehensive sustainable development agenda for the time after 2015, the target date for the UN’s Millennium Development Goals.

“The creation of the UN High-Level Advisory Group on Sustainable Transport constitutes an important step towards focusing on transport as a priority building block for sustainable development,” said Viegas. “More than 40 years after the first oil crisis of 1973 and more than 20 years after global warming became a household word, transport is still 97% dependent on fossil fuels and produces almost 25% of man-made carbon emissions. The time has come to end this, because it is simply unsustainable.”

Viegas also pledged support for Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon’s initiative: “The International Transport Forum, which brings together the ministers with responsibility for transport of 54 countries, is prepared to support the High-Level Advisory Group in whatever ways it can.”

The Advisory Group will be co-chaired by Olof Persson, President and CEO of Sweden's Volvo Group, a founding member of the ITF’s Corporate Partnership Board, and Carolina Tohá, the mayor of Santiago de Chile. The 12 members are drawn from different parts of the transport community including public transport, logistics, the automotive industry, maritime shipping, railways, energy and urban planning as well as city officials.
Photo: United Nations

Go to the ITF press release

Go to ITF work on the environment

Go to the UN announcement of the High-Level Advisory Group on Sustainable Transport (external link | audio)

Go to UN information on the Millennium Development Goals  (external link)
 
Event | 18 July 2014
Putting Transport on the Latin American Investment Agenda
   
ITF Secretary-General José Viegas brought a transport perspective to the OECD’s 4th Conference on Investment in Latin America and the Caribbean in Lima, Peru on 7-8 July. Themed “Bridging infrastructure gaps through smart investment”, the event - co-organised by the OECD, the government of Peru and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and opened by Peruvian Prime Minister René Cornejo Diaz - explored the needs and opportunities for investment in the region, with a view to maximizing economic and development benefits generated by infrastructure investment. Mr Viegas moderated a panel on "Investment in transport – corporate strategies and regulatory challenges" (pictured) and was a discussant on the concluding panel, together with Colombian transport minister Cecilia Álvarez-Correa Glen.

In Santiago, Chile, Secretary-General Viegas met with Chilean minister of transport Andres Gomez-Lobo and Vice-Minister Cristián Bowen to discuss next steps for the implementation of the planned Logistics Observatory, for which Chile and the ITF had signed a letter of intent at the ITF Summit in Germany in May. Intensified co-operation in other areas such as ITF’s research activities and with respect to Chilean public transport projects were also discussed. In Santiago, Mr Viegas also met with board members of leading transport companies including LAN, the Chilean airline, and Ultranav (shipping and ports).
(Photo: ProInversión Perú | Flickr)

Go to Conference webpage | Conference photos

Go to ITF work on infrastructure
 
Event | 20 June 2014
Exploring Transport Options for Asian Cities
   
Many Asian countries are experiencing significant urbanisation and confront related transport challenges in their cities due to sprawl, congestion, pollution, safety and access. A joint seminar on 24 June in Tokyo organised by Japan’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport (MLIT) with the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the ITF explored future policy directions in the context of the ASEAN-Japan Senior Transport Officials Meeting (STOM), which brings together the region's Vice-Ministers in charge of transport. In his keynote, ITF Secretary-General José Viegas emphasised the importance of smarter modal integration and land use policies. He particularly highlighted the ongoing conceptual shift from transport as a provider of mobility to an enabler of access. Viegas also underlined ITF's commitment to intensify relations with the emerging nations of the region.
(Photo: tokyoform | Flickr cc)

More on ITF Urban Transport work

Seminar Programme (pdf)
 
Cycling | 06 June 2014
ITF Stimulates Debate on Cycling in Canada
   
ITF's participation at Canada's Go Vélo Montréal Festival culminated in a keynote address by economist and cycling expert Philippe Crist on 28 May by invitation of Vélo Quebec.

Selected media following the event:
- Payant les vélos en ville ? | Radio-Canada | 28 May
- Vélo: Montréal doit s’inspirer de l’Europe | Le Devoir | 27 May
- Le vélo à Montréal en cinq questions | TVA Nouvelles | 28 May
- Pédaler à Montréal...Comme en Europe | La Presse | 27 May
- Comment rester dans le peloton ? | CiBL | 3 June
- Montréal, toujours capitale nord-américaine du vélo ? | CiBL | 29 May

More on ITF Cycle Safety work


 
Summit | 21 May 2014
Summit 2014: Session summaries, video, photo highlights online
   
  ITF's Annual Summit on "Transport for a Changing World" was from 21-23 May.

Session summaries including key quotes, videos, photos are online.
 
Roundtable Report | 13 May 2014
New ITF Report Reviews Global Experience in Airport Expansion
   
  The latest ITF report "Expanding Airport Capacity in Large Urban Areas" reviews international experience in reconciling planning and environmental constraints with demand for airport capacity and the potential benefits in terms of productivity and growth from developing international airline services. Experience is compared in London, New York, Tokyo, Osaka, Sydney and in Germany's main airports with particular attention to the dynamics of airline markets and implications for airport planning in multi-airport cities.

Access the report

Information on Ministers' Roundtable on Expanding Airport Capacity at 2014 Summit
 
Statistics Brief | 28 April 2014
Global Freight Data Highlight Continuous Dependency on Asia-led Growth
   
  The latest update of global freight data collected by the ITF through December 2013 reinforces Asia’s role as the locomotive of growth:

- USA and EU27 external trade, measured in tonnes of goods moved, remain stagnant;

- Dependency on Asia, especially China, for global growth intensifies;

- Brazil’s external trade by air, considered as a lead indicator, declines to below pre-crisis levels;

- Inland freight remains weak in the EU area, the USA and the Russian Federation.
Photo: Gavin Craigie | Flickr cc

Download the Statistics Brief for free
 
Discussion Paper | 24 April 2014
Ensuring Safe Travel for Women
   
  Safe travel for all road users is a prerequisite for ensuring sustainable and inclusive cities. Providing safe transport systems is an objective for sustainable transport, because risk of injuries and deaths from traffic crashes has become a major public health concern worldwide. Safe travel options for women in general and specifically low income women are important for addressing livelihood and poverty issues for a significant proportion of urban population in low income countries like India.

The latest ITF Discussion Paper presents data from the Indian capital Delhi (pop. 16.4 million) and Vishakhapattanam (a southern Indian city, pop. 1.7 million) comparing the travel patterns of women and men. The household survey in Delhi focused on low income settlements, since poverty adds another dimension to gender bias. The survey, repeated after ten years, shows that travel patterns remained unchanged. Women travel shorter distances, are dependent on lower cost modes - walking and public transport - and perform multi-purpose linked trips. In view of the sustainability requirements, lower mobility of women must be addressed by ensuring safe accessibility to employment opportunities by walking, bicycles and public transport. The paper concludes with possible interventions required to ensure safe and secure travel of women at land use planning level and street design level.
Photo: Meena Kadri | Flickr cc

Planning and designing transport systems to ensure safe travel for women
Commissioned for WIIT Conference 2014
 
Event | 16 April 2014
ITF Out in Force for Top European Transport Event
   
  ITF Secretary-General José Viegas delivered an opening keynote speech on Innovation in Transport at the plenary session "From Research to Deployment: a Driver for Job Creation in Europe" at the 2014 Transport Research Arena (TRA), on 14 April in Paris. TRA is the major conference on transport in Europe, bridging the gap between research and the market to improve European transport competitiveness, with over 3 000 participants expected. Mr Viegas  also moderated a session on "Urban Innovation and Change: the Dynamic Nexus of Transport, Environment and Health", in the presence of Khatuna Gogaladze, Georgian Minister of Environment and Natural Resources Protection, on 14 April.

Stephen Perkins, ITF Head of Research, spoke at the "Road Safety Economics: Highlights for Public Decision Making", on 14 April and also at the session on "International Co-operation in Transport Research" on 15 April. ITF Economist Jari Kauppila delivered a speech at the session on "Sharing Crash Modification Functions (CMF): an OECD Report Offers a World of Possibilities", also on 15 April.

ITF Head of Policy and Summit Preparation Mary Crass was moderator of the Gala Dinner of the Women's Issues in Transportation Conference on 14 April, attended by Jean Todt President of the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) and Michelle Yeoh, Global Ambassador for the Make Roads Safe campaign. Stephen Perkins was chair of the "Bridging the Gap Among Countries" session of the conference on 16 April.

A seminar on "The Impact of Distracted Driving and Fatigue on Road Safety" organised by ITF during TRA addressed the concerns for safety linked to use of mobile and on-board information in vehicles on 15 April.

More information on the Distracted Driving Seminar

TRA Official Website (external website)

Women's Issues in Transportation Conference (WIIT)  (external website)

Planning and designing transport systems to ensure safe travel for women. ITF Discussion Paper commissioned for WIIT Conference 2014
 
Event | 24 March 2014
Rethinking Urban Transport for a Changing World
   
  Policy makers face both challenges and opportunities from a rapidly changing demography and the advancement of information and communication technology (ICT). Changes in demography have been most noticeable in East Asia, especially in Japan, Korea and China. And the ICT revolution is rapidly changing lifestyles in these countries and elsewhere by enabling previously unthinkable levels of information exchange and connectivity. The transport sector needs to adapt to these changes and focus on the opportunities they present. Nowhere is this more evident than in an urban context, where rapid growth of cities poses enormous challenges for transport, but increasing connectivity is already becoming part of the answer.

A joint seminar this week in Seoul, Korea, organised jointly by the Korea Transport Institute (KOTI) and the International Transport Forum (ITF) at the OECD, takes a look at "Urban Transport for a Changing World" in an Asian context, with a focus on China, Japan and Korea. Experts from the three countries will present best practice cases for mutual benchmarking on 26 and 27 March, complemented by contributions from the World Bank and the ITF. The seminar’s findings will provide important input for ITF’s upcoming 2014 Summit of Transport Ministers, which will take place in Leipzig, Germany from 21 to 23 May. "Urban Transport for a Changing World" is the fifth seminar held jointly by KOTI and ITF since 2010, with a view to sharing knowledge and strengthen cooperation on subject areas of mutual interest. The first seminar in 2010 examined green growth in transport; in 2011, the focus was on promotion policies and critical evaluation of electric vehicles. The 2012 seminar explored seamless public transport for all, and the 2013 theme was funding transport.
Photo: tokyoform | Flickr cc

Seminar information on the KOTI website (external link)

Download latest seminar programme (pdf)

More information on past KOTI-ITF joint seminars

More information on ITF's 2014 Summit of Transport Ministers
 
Peer Review | 05 March 2014
Mexican Railways Peer Review Released
   
  The performance of the Mexican freight rail industry has shown continuous improvement since the creation of the current industry structure in 1995. A peer review of the country’s railway freight commissioned by the Mexican government and released by ITF today, notes that quality of management, technical quality of railway infrastructure and rolling-stock, capital and labour productivity, traffic levels and market shares have all improved markedly. The report calls this “a transformation in industry prospects that hardly seemed possible prior to the reforms” of 1995.

Traffic has since doubled and the modal share of rail freight increased by more than a third. Mexico’s railways now carry more freight than any railway in the European Union apart from Germany, and more than those of France, Spain, Italy and Austria combined and as much general freight as Brazil. Mexico’s main rail freight concessions are the most productive freight railways (if the mining sector is excluded) in Latin America.

To build on this success, the review recommends that regulatory institutions and capacity be strengthened to address pricing and capacity issues associated with trackage rights. More systematic data should be captured to allow the regulator to make determinations on these in an informed and objective way as regards risks, costs and benefits. This also applies to system structure and potential access and tariff regulation.

ITF Head of Research Stephen Perkins and Economist Aimée Aguilar Jaber presented the review to the Trade and Industry Development Committee of the Senate of Mexico on 19 February and at a Senate hearing with stakeholders on 5 March. The report was produced in close collaboration with the Ministry of Transport.
(Photo: Jims_photos / Flickr cc)

Read the peer review (PDF) Versión española

See Senate Transportation Committee presentation (PDF) Versión española

See media mentions
 
Research Report | 18 February 2014
Every Kilometre Cycled Benefits Society
   
The health benefits to society from cycling outweigh negative impacts by up to a factor of 20, according to ITF's latest research report "Cycling, Health and Safety". The report, published at a time when many cities are seeking to increase the share of cycling amidst concerns for safety, shows that the key to delivering overall benefits from cycling is creating a safe system through government policy and city action.

Among the recommendations for policy makers is the moderation of some urban road speeds to 30km/h or less, and the use of separated cycling infrastructure to increase the number of new cyclists. Attracting new cyclists gains the greatest health benefits through increased physical activity, including reducing risks linked to cardiovascular disease, obesity and Type-2 diabetes.

More information and access the report
 
Summit 2014 | 04 February 2014
International organisations meet at ITF to develop Summit 2014 themes
   
Each year in preparation for its Annual Summit, the ITF invites international organisations to its consultation day to hear priority issues related to the Summit theme. The 2014 consultation day, on the theme "Transport for a Changing World", was held on 31 January in Paris gathering over 35 organisations and providing a direct input to the content development of the sessions for the 2014 Summit.

More information

Photos from the event
 
Organisation | 21 January 2014
ITF Inaugurates New Platform for Co-operation with Private Sector
   
The International Transport Forum has opened a new chapter in its long-standing co-operation with the corporate world.  Twelve multi-national companies from seven countries met in Paris on 20 January to inaugurate the Forum's new Corporate Partnership Board (CPB) and set a roadmap for private-sector knowledge sharing with policy makers.

The CPB will serve as the International Transport Forum's mechanism for including expert knowledge from corporations in transport and related areas for policy analysis.  CPB activities will comprise the launch of policy analysis projects, events and publications on the basis of an annual work plan that will be agreed by members.

The CPB's founding members are Volvo (Sweden - automotive), China Communications Construction Company Group (CCCC, China - infrastructure), COLAS (France - infrastructure), China Ocean Shipping Group Company (COSCO, China - shipping), Ekol Logistics (Turkey - logistics), Kapsch TrafficCom (Austria - Intelligent Transport Systems), Meridiam Infrastructure (France - financial sector), Michelin (France - automotive), Nissan (Japan - automotive), PTV Group (Germany - Intelligent Transport Systems), SerTrans (Turkey - logistics), Total (France - energy).

The inaugural CPB meeting agreed on operating guidelines and created a standing committee to govern the board's tactical business under the chairmanship of the ITF Secretary-General. Corporate Partners will make proposals for the first round of projects by early February 2014, which will then be consolidated by the standing committee. Work on CPB projects is slated to start in March; presentation of first results is planned for October 2014.

The CPB is expected to grow from the initial twelve members to a maximum of 50 members over three years. It supersedes the ITF Advisory Board. The next plenary meeting of the CPB will be held during the Annual Summit of Transport Ministers in Leipzig, Germany on 21-23 May 2014.

"I am delighted that a dozen multi-national companies have agreed to become founding members of ITF's Corporate Partnership Board", said José Viegas, Secretary-General of the ITF. "I laud their entrepreneurial spirit and look forward to working with them. The corporate world is at the frontier of new developments in the transport sector, and the Corporate Partnership Board will help the ITF to integrate the cutting-edge perspective of business into our analysis even better and provide relevant evidence-based advice to policy makers."

Patrick Oliva, Senior Vice-President at Michelin said: "The CPB represents a very promising step forward in securing a confident dialogue between the public and private sector in the field of transport innovation. Tomorrow's transport requires not only audacious technologies but also forward looking policies, worldwide".

“I am very pleased to announce our cooperation with the CPB. This is certainly an exciting and strategically important task for us because the implementation of sustainable mobility solutions is based on a close partnership between the worlds of business and politics. We are looking forward to sharing our extensive expertise in the field of advanced intelligent transport technologies and contributing to the development of sustainable and innovative transport solutions,“ said Vincent Kobesen, CEO of PTV Group.

 
Declaration | 13 January 2014
Road Safety Experts Agree Recommendations for Data Collection and Analysis
   
The critical importance of better data to improve road safety has led international road safety experts from 40 countries to issue the "Buenos Aires Declaration on Better Safety Data for Better Road Safety Outcomes".

The Declaration recommends 12 measures for improving the collection and analysis of road safety data as a critical tool to design effective road safety policies. Among these are: the requirement for a minimum set of data for analysing road safety, which includes not only safety data but also contextual data; safety data should be aggregated at national level using a lead national agency; and the need to understand the relationship between road safety performance and economic development.

The recommendations are a result of the ongoing road safety work of ITF's International Road Traffic Safety Data and Analysis Group (IRTAD) and the Ibero-American Road Safety Observatory (OISEVI), a co-operative body of Latin American countries for the reduction of road accidents by improvements in safety data. Better data is fundamental to achieving the objectives of the UN Decade of Action on Road Safety; a halving the expected level of road deaths by 2020.

Read the Buenos Aires Declaration on Better Safety Data for Better Road Safety Outcomes  Spanish version

Go to more information on IRTAD
 
Publication | 06 January 2014
Funding Urban Transport in London
   
In our compendium on funding urban public transport, ITF with the International Association of Public Transport (UITP) looks at how the challenges of financing urban transport systems in the face of increasing urbanisation are being met in 10 cities of ITF member countries. These case studies highlight the diversity of local situations and needs as well as the important role of national governments in supporting resilient funding architectures. The third ITF member country city in the series, London, transformed the challenge represented by the expected fast growth in population and jobs in the next 20 years into an opportunity for establishing public transport as key driver of economic development and attractiveness of the city. This opened the way to ambitious programmes of development and modernisation of public transport in London. This is supported by a combination of funding sources, involving not only users and different levels of government, but also the beneficiaries of improved public transport in London, as well as innovative third-party funding arrangements. The case study examines the roles of various key actors (government, transport authorities and operators), funding systems and the opportunities and challenges ahead for the London region. 
(Photo: gmacfayden / Flickr cc)

Go to the Case Study Compendium
 
Statistics Brief | 19 December 2013
Shifting Economic Mass to Emerging Economies Shown in Global Freight Data
   
The latest update of global freight data collected by ITF through September 2013 reinforces the observation of a shift of economic mass to emerging economies:

- USA and EU27 exports increase strongly and imports decline markedly, reflecting weak domestic demand and stronger performance of emerging economies;

- EU external trade by air, considered as a lead indicator, rebounds above pre-crisis peak, indicating a potential improvement of the economic outlook;

- Road and rail freight data continue to point out weak domestic demand especially in the EU area.
(Photo: © Oktay Ortakcioglu/ istockphoto)

Download the Statistics Brief for free
 
Roundtable | 18 December 2013
First ITF Roundtable in India to Focus on High-Speed Rail
   
An ITF Roundtable on "The Economics of Investment in High-Speed Rail" in New Delhi on 18-19 December will deliberate the conditions under which investment in high-speed rail delivers positive economic returns. Experts will examine the key factors that drive the costs of high-speed rail investment and review the economic benefits. Papers will review experience in a range of countries that have developed large high-speed rail networks. Experts on the economics of smaller scale high-speed rail systems will also attend the discussions. ITF and international experts will join Montek Singh Ahluwalia, Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission of the Government of India, and Mallikarjun Kharge, Minister of Railways.
(Photo: Arnaud Lizeray / Flickr cc)


Go to more information on the Roundtable
 
Publication | 10 December 2013
Policy decisions are key determinant for more sustainable transport
   
The volume of global transport could double or even quadruple by 2050, according to a new study released today by the International Transport Forum (ITF), an intergovernmental organisation with 54 member states associated with the OECD.

GDP growth, freight intensity of economic activity and demographic change are important drivers of this growth. But key determinants for the level of future increases are policy choices, according to the ITF Transport Outlook, an annual report containing long-run scenarios for global transport activity and related CO2 emissions.

China and India drive transport volume growth, with traffic increases to between 4 and 9 times the present level. Across non-OECD countries, surface passenger transport volumes could be four or five times higher in 2050 than today. For the industrialised OECD area, surface passenger travel (measured in vehicle-kilometres) is projected to grow by 50-60%.

For surface freight volumes – i.e. goods transported by road and rail – ITF projections put growth at up to 430% in non-OECD emerging economies and up to 125% for the OECD area. With low GDP growth and a decoupling of economic growth and freight intensity, the growth figures there could be 100% and 40% respectively at the lower end.

Strong increases in transport volumes mean strong growth of emissions from transport. The baseline projection sees global CO2 emissions from surface transport grow by 80% by 2050. At the top and bottom end, the increase could be as high as 170% or as low as 30%. The outcome will depend not least on choosing the best long-term strategies to support growth and protect the environment. Policy choices are particularly important in the cities of emerging regions, as exploding urbanisation shapes global transport trends.

Go to the publications page
 
Working Group | 12 December 2013
New ITF Working Group on Sustainable Transport launched
   
Many countries have developed policies and initiatives to reduce CO2 emissions from transport to combat climate change. But which of these policies will be most effective over the long term? What are possible side-effects, and how can they be managed? Are the measures cost effective and how is effectiveness best measured? And not least: should policy makers focus more on supporting specific technological advances, for instance in fuel efficiency, or on broad policies, e.g. measures that influence modal choice and land use?

These are some of the questions that will be addressed by ITF’s new Working Group to Assess Policies for Transition to Sustainable Transport which kicked off with its first meeting in Paris on 12/13 December 2014. The Working Group will start with a review of different national approaches to assessing climate change mitigation policies. This will also involve evaluating their coherence with policies to reduce other emissions, such as NOx, PM or noise and include a look at approaches to assessing co-benefits, for instance in relation to oil security and green growth. Another objective is to identify limitations of cost benefit analysis for assessing emission mitigation policies, and to examine what additional analytical tools might be useful to help make better policy choices.

Chaired by France, the Working Group consists of 12 experts from ten ITF member countries (Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Sweden and the United States). For the first meeting, they were joined by 16 invited experts, including from the International Monetary Fund, the OECD Environment Directorate and OECD Centre for Tax Policy as well as various research institutions such as the London School of Economics in the UK, the Laboratoire d'Économie des Transports in France or the Swedish National Road and Transport Research Institute, among others.

Go to more information on the Working Group on Sustainable Transport

Go to more information on ITF work on Environment
 
Event | 05 December 2013
Mobilising Transport Investment for Green Growth
   
Mobilising investment in the land transport sector will be examined on 5-6 December at the OECD 2013 Green Growth and Sustainable Development Forum in co-operation with ITF. The forum will explore solutions to how governments can improve their investment policy frameworks to reduce risk and attract long-term private financing in support of green growth. 

The land transport sector is set to see significant investment in most countries as infrastructure is renewed and adapted to growing populations and changing needs. Achieving reduction in green house gas emissions on the scale indicated by policy commitments will be expensive but necessary to deliver on green growth. Long-term investment in the transport sector is foremost a public sector issue since long investment cycles and payback periods often discourage private investment.

Incremental improvement in performance in relation to green house gases, air pollution and noise will be driven by vehicle regulations such as CAFÉ and EURO standards. Regular tightening of fuel economy standards has made the largest contribution to cutting CO2 emissions from the sector to date, and tax incentives (such as bonus/malus car taxes and differentiation of truck km charges) have been deployed to accelerate progress. The pace of change set by government regulatory time-tables will be a critical part of the policy framework for driving investment in cleaner technologies.
(Photo: VTrans Flickr cc)

Go to more information about ITF’s work on environment

Go to more ITF's Green Growth and Transport discussion paper (pdf)
 
Roundtable | 03 December 2013
ITF Provides Input on Urban Transport Policy for Mayors and Ministers
   
As governments across the world seek a path to more resilient, inclusive and sustainable growth, cities are reforming and innovating at an unprecedented pace and scale. Cities are increasingly creative in delivering basic local services and undertaking critical investments for the future, at a time of severe financial constraints and in response to broader global trends with enormous implications for the future of cities, such as climate change, migration and population ageing. Cities’ actions contribute to growth, but they are often undermined by a lack of coherence between national and city-level policies.

Improving the co-operation between national governments and cities to foster growth and well-being is the focus of the Fifth OECD Roundtable of Mayors and Ministers meeting in Marseille, France on 4-5 December. Building on previous Roundtables in Milan, Madrid, Paris and Chicago, this fifth iteration provides further opportunity for national ministers and city mayors to discuss ways of aligning national and local policies and help cities make the most of their potential. Discussions will focus on mobilising investment in hard and soft infrastructures, fostering innovation and strengthening environmental sustainability, financial resilience and social inclusion. ITF Secretary-General José Viegas will contribute input from ITF with respect to the critical urban transport dimension. ITF has produced a wide range of studies on urban transport issues such as congestion reduction, active mobility or regulation of Public Transport and has made the issue of urban mobility a recurrent theme at its Annual Summit of ministers of transport. (Photo: Jan Jacob Trip Flickr cc)

Go to more information about ITF’s work on urban transport

Go to more information on the Fifth Roundtable of Mayors and Ministers (external link)
Mission | 22 November 2013
ITF Further Strengthens Relations with Mexico
   
Secretary-General José Viegas discussed global transport trends and policy issues with Mexican Secretary of Communications and Transport Gerardo Ruiz Esparza and Undersecretary Carlos Almada during a top-level mission aimed at strengthening ties with the ITF member country on 19-20 November 2013. The strong interest from Mexico in ITF's research work was highlighted during meetings at the transport ministry with the Director General of Rail and Multimodal Transport, Pablo Suárez, Director General of Federal Road Transport, Federico Domínguez, Director General of Civil Aviation, Alejandro Argudín, Director General of Engagement with Civil Society Organisations, Adrián del Maz. Road safety was at the centre of a meeting with José San Martin, Director General of the Mexican Institute of Transport (IMT), a ministry research agency. Mr Viegas also presented ITF research to the Mexican Transport Commission at Mexico's parliament, the National Congress (pictured, from left, Fernando Maldonado Hernández, Secretary of the Transport Commission, Juan Carlos Muñoz Márquez, President of the Transport Commission, and José Viegas, ITF Secretary-General). He later met with Undersecretary Salvador Sanchez Estrada of the Ministry of Tourism.

The mission continues ITF's increasing engagement with Latin American countries which follows Argentina's joining the International Traffic Safety Data and Analysis Group (IRTAD) and the first ITF Latin American Roundtable on Port Investment in Chile earlier this month.

Go to media mentions from the Mexican mission

Go to information on Argentina's joining IRTAD

Go to Roundtable in Chile on Port Investment and Container Shipping Markets
 
Awards | 21 November 2013
New Transport Innovation Award launched
   
The new Promising Transport Innovation Award will recognise an innovation with the potential to significantly improve the transport industry. The innovation can be based on technological change, operational change, organisational change or a combination of these.

In order to be eligible, the project must have received either financial or regulatory approval for implementation, or be in implementation for less than two years. The award is open to businesses, government and non-government organisations and individuals within ITF member or observer countries.

The Promising Transport Innovation Award complements the two prestigious annual awards already offered by the International Transport Forum:

The Transport Achievement Award recognises a demonstrated achievement of successful transport innovation that has brought about significant improvement in the transport industry and has been operational in the market for at least two years, but no more than five years. It is open to transport operators and other service providers, transport authorities, suppliers and manufacturers within ITF member or observer countries.

The Young Researcher of the Year Award (2013 winner Laura Schewel pictured) rewards creative reflection and analysis on the part of young researchers investigating the contribution of transport to the well-being of our societies. It is open to researchers under 35 years of age who have undertaken their research in an institution, university or consultancy firm within ITF member or observer countries.

Closing date for applications for all three awards: Friday 7 February 2014

More information on the Awards

Event | 15 November 2013
ITF Joins COP19 Effort to Combat Climate Change
   
Transport CO2 emissions in urban Latin America could be 34% higher than a business-as-usual scenario by 2050 should mobility there follow a private transport-oriented, high road-growth path. This forecast is based on ITF's Urban Transport Model which will be presented at COP19, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Conference of the Parties in Warsaw, Poland this week.

In an alternative scenario based on the model, urban transport emissions in the region could fall by 27% over the same period, provided that long-term transport planning and policies translate into public transport-oriented, lower road growth mobility. The modeling results highlight the critical importance of decisions taken by transport policy-makers.

The ITF Urban Transport Model simulates urban evolution based on average agglomeration classes and allows modeling of mobility, modal shares and also of CO2 emissions, being fully compatible with the Mobility Model (MoMo) used by the International Energy Agency (IEA). It provides important input for ITF's annual Transport Outlook, to be published in the OECD Outlook series in December. In a next step, the ITF Urban Transport Model will be expanded to cover Asia, beginning with China and India.

At COP19, ITF will be joining the efforts for meaningful progress in climate change mitigation with two presentations. ITF economist Aimée Aguilar Jaber will showcase the Urban Transport Model during the side event on "Potential of Low-Carbon Transport". On 17 November, she will present the Forum's work on research priorities and better communication of potential C02 mitigation during a session on COP19's "Transport Day". (Photo: Juanedc/Flickr cc)

Go to presentation ITF Urban Transport Model (pdf)

Go to presentation Research Priorities and Better Communication for Mitigation Potential (pdf)

Go to an overview of ITF work on environment

Go to the COP19 website (external link)
Working Group | 14 November 2013
Argentina joins ITF’s Road Safety Working Group
   
In a big step towards better road safety in the region, Argentina has become the first Latin American country to join the International Traffic Safety Data and Analysis Group (IRTAD), the International Transport Forum’s permanent working group on road safety data collection and analysis. IRTAD is particularly renowned for its road safety database and its twinning programmes to improve road safety data collection as a key tool for guiding road safety policies.

In a ceremony in Buenos Aires on November 13, Felipe Rodríguez Laguens, Executive Director of the National Road Safety Agency of Argentina (photo: right), received a commemorative certificate to mark the accession of Latin America’s second largest country. IRTAD chairman Fred Wegman highlighted the importance of Argentina’s decision to make road safety a national policy priority. “Argentina is the first Latin-American country to take part in IRTAD, which makes it a reference for other countries in the region”, Wegman added.

Road Safety experts from around the world are meeting in Buenos Aires this week for a conference on “Better Safety Data for Better Road Safety Outcomes”, jointly organised by IRTAD and the Ibero-American Road Safety Observatory (OSIEVI), an umbrella for co-operation among road safety authorities from 18 Latin American and Caribbean countries that grew out of the IRTAD twinning programme in 2011. To support OISEVI, IRTAD created the IRTAD LAC road safety database with a Spanish interface, recently highlighted at the 68th Session of the UN General Assembly by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon as an important initiative for the improvement and standardisation of data collection methods and data quality in Latin America.

Go to more information on IRTAD

Go to the conference website (external link)

Go to the OISEVI website (external link)
Event | 12 November 2013
Transport Design with Everybody in Mind
   
The need to design tomorrow’s transport systems with a broad range of users in mind was the message delivered by José Viegas, Secretary-General of the International Transport Forum in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, this week at the 17th World meeting of the International Road Federation (IRF). At any given time, one third of transport users face some form of impairment of their personal mobility such as reduced vision or movement.  Accessibility should therefore be an integral part of transport system design, argued Viegas. All transport and land-use policies should take into account the needs of user groups such as the elderly or disabled. Designing transport for better accessibility – for instance improving door-to-door mobility by focusing on intra- and inter-modal links or designing pedestrian movements for safety and comfort - will benefit all citizens.  Despite the general benefits, accessibility is often treated as a marginal issue with low priority and addressed late or even as optional. Legal, regulatory and technical frameworks are rarely adequate, responsibility fragmented, coordination weak and monitoring/evaluation insufficient. But accessibility enhancements can only be successfully implemented if governments, local authorities, manufacturers and operators work together – and, most importantly, consultations with those concerned are an integral part of the planning process.  (Photo: Jacobo Tarrío/Flickr cc)

Go to José Viegas’ presentation “Design with Everybody in Mind”

Go to an overview of ITF work on accessibility
Roundtable | 07 November 2013
First ITF Roundtable in South America examines Port Investment
   
The ITF’s first ever Roundtable in South America is taking place n Santiago de Chile on 7/8 November. Jointly organised by Chile’s Ministry of Transport and Communication and ITF, international experts will examine “Port Investment and Container Shipping Markets”. Chile is ITF’s most recent member country, joining the organisation in 2012.

The widening of the Panama Canal for 12 400 TEU vessels and the introduction of even larger ships of up to 18 000 TEU on the busy Asia-Europe routes raises the prospect of major change in the global shipping market. The ability to accommodate very large ships has to be considered in planning new port developments, especially where there is likely to be competition between ports.

In this environment, aggressive yet sensible port planning is key to the sustained economic growth of exports-driven economies. The Roundtable, chaired by Mary Brooks of Dalhousie University, Nova Scotia, Canada will examine the broader issues that influence the development of container transport, with a focus on Chile’s plans for port expansion. Discussion papers prepared for the Roundtable are available for free download.   (Photo: Matt Hinsa/Flickr/cc)

Go to the Discussion Papers

Go to the interview with Stephen Perkins at the roundtable “Los puertos de Chile y Perú no competirán entre sí” in Diario Financiero

Go to information on previous Roundtables
Publication | 31 October 2013
Funding Urban Public Transport in Chicago
   
In our compendium on funding urban public transport, ITF with the International Association of Public Transport (UITP) looks at how the challenges of financing urban transport systems in the face of increasing urbanisation are being met in 10 cities of ITF member countries. These case studies highlight the diversity of local situations and needs as well as the important role of national governments in supporting resilient funding architectures.

The second ITF member country city in the series, Chicago, has been able to mitigate the challenges of lower density growth through having an extensive rail and bus network, one of the USA's largest, providing a strong backbone on which core regional office and residential development can be based. However, problems of maintenance and infrastructure spending backlogs have been further hindered by lack of financial stability. Regional authorities recognise these issues and are seeking strategies to ensure long-term, high-quality public transport services in the region.

The case study examines the roles of various key actors (government, transport authorities and operators), funding systems and the opportunities and challenges ahead for the Chicago region.

Go to the Case Study Compendium

Interview | 06 November 2013
Interview: José Viegas on political actions that will reduce road deaths
   
In an interview with TheCityFix, ITF Secretary-General José Viegas urges governments to emphasise road safety as a national priority across federal, state and local levels as the only way to get results.

Go to the interview (external link)

Event | 01 November 2013
Conference: Better road safety data for better road safety outcomes
   
ITF’s International Traffic Safety Data and Analysis Group (IRTAD), the Ibero-American Road Safety Observatory (OISEVI) and Argentina’s National Road Safety Agency (ANSV) are bringing together experts from Latin America to improve the quality of road safety data at a joint conference on 13/14 November 2013 in Buenos Aires. The meeting is a big step towards facilitating knowledge transfer between experts from OECD and Latin American and Caribbean countries in the key policy area of road safety. The meeting will showcase recent initiatives to improve safety data collection and present new research and analysis undertaken by the IRTAD Group, including on speed and crash risks, forecasts, the link between safety performance short run GDP trends, and addressing serious injuries. Support for the conference comes from the World Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank and the Development Bank of Latin America.


Go to the conference website (external link)

Event | 17 October 2013
ECMT: Happy 60th Anniverary!
   
ECMT 60th AnniversarySixty years ago, on 17 October 1953, Ministers from 16 European countries met in Brussels, Belgium, to create the European Conference of Ministers of Transport. The ECMT, as it became widely known, was intended by its founders as “a procedure whereby effective steps can be taken to coordinate and rationalise European inland transport of international importance”.

ECMT remains the legal core of ITF and maintains a number of European activities, such as the Multilateral Quota System. On the occasion of its 60th anniversary, the ECMT archive has been digitalised and is now freely available online on the OECD iLibrary.

Read more on 60 years of ECMT

Publication | 09 October 2013
Funding Urban Public Transport in Beijing
   
In our compendium on funding urban public transport, ITF with the International Association of Public Transport (UITP) looks at how the challenges of financing urban transport systems in the face of increasing urbanisation are being met in 10 cities of ITF member countries. These case studies highlight the diversity of local situations and needs as well as the important role of national governments in supporting resilient funding architectures.

The first ITF member country city in the series, Beijing, has seen tremendous recent growth with increasing car ownership rates straining the region's road networks. 240km of new metro lines have been built since 2008, multi-level bus services matching new travel patterns have been developed and active management of car ownership via a license plate lottery and zone-based parking charges introduced to tackle traffic congestion.

The case study examines the roles of various key actors (government, transport authorities and operators), funding systems and the opportunities and challenges ahead for Beijing.

Go to the Case Study Compendium


Working Group | 25 September 2013
Road Transport Group approves Quality Charter
   
ITF Working Group Chairman Thanos Vlastos at Walk21The ITF's Road Transport Group, meeting on 19-20 September 2013, approved the text of a Quality Charter for International Haulage Operations under the ECMT Multilateral Quota. It was also decided that the Group will work further on implementation and incitation mechanisms, linking the implementation of provisions of the Charter to Quota development. These mechanisms shall be approved and become operational on 1 January 2016, at the latest.

The provisions of the Charter set the highest standards in the domain of access to the profession of international road haulage operators, as well as initial and periodic training of international drivers across the European content. Thus these standards will be brought up to EU level for all 43 European ITF member countries participating in the Multilateral Quota system. The aim is to increase the overall quality of international road transport in Europe and further strengthen the image of the Multilateral Quota as a symbol of the highest quality in road transport in both environmental and social fields.

The Group also approved the text of the new User Guide on ECMT Multilateral Quota, which enters in force on 1 January 2014, following the introduction of ”EURO VI safe” lorries into the Quota. This Guide defines the operational rules of the Multilateral Quota, and establishes new certificates for the inclusion of the EURO VI lorry category in the system. The new certificates can be consulted at this link. The new Guide will become available on the same webpage shortly.

The Group also decided to establish a new Certificate of Compliance with Technical Provisions Concerning Exhaust and Noise Emissions and Safety Requirements for lorries with total permissible laden weight (TPLW) between 3.5 and 6 tonnes, in order to facilitate and harmonise control procedures for these lorries in Europe. The certificate will be established during 2014.

Go to information on the Multilateral Quota

Event | 17 September 2013
ITF pedestrian work showcased at Walk21 Conference
   
ITF Working Group Chairman Thanos Vlastos at Walk21ITF Pedestrian Safety expert Véronique Feypell (left)
with
Gunda Krauss, Citizen of Munich, on the
"Walking at All Levels" panel
during Walk21 Munich
ITF's Véronique Feypell, a member of the Walk21 Conference's Scientific Committee, provided pedestrian safety expertise on the "Walking at all levels" panel joined by the Mayor of Munich during the Conference in Munch, Germany last week. A pre-workshop of the ITF Working Group on Pedestrian Safety, Urban Space and Health and the European Cooperation in Science and Technology (COST) project group on pedestrians was organised at the conference to discuss new initiatives since the ITF's report on Pedestrian Safety was released. The ITF Working Group Chairman Thanos Vlastos also gave a keynote speech on the groups conclusions.

The Walk21 Conference, with the vision "to support, encourage and inspire professionals to evolve the best policies and implement the best initiatives, which create and promote environments where people choose to walk as an indicator of liveable communities", attracted 500 particpants from 40 countries.

Download the Pedestrian Safety, Urban Space and Health report from the OECD bookshop. version française

Browse a free copy of the report online.

Get information on the ITF Working Group.

See a video interview with Working Group Chairman
   

Event | 12 September 2013
ITF at the APEC Transport Ministers' Meeting

 

In preparation for the APEC Leaders' Meeting in Bali, Indonesia in October, the 8th APEC Transport Ministers' Meeting in Tokyo on 4-6 September focused on how to enhance connectivity in the region through high-quality transport. Connectivity is one of the priorities of this year's APEC Leaders' Meeting. Ministers agreed to develop a transport "Connectivity Map" that will visualise the ideal transport network for the year 2020 within the region. They will also develop a "Quality Transport" vision that encompasses convenience, efficiency, safety, security, and sustainability as priorities.

For the ITF, which participated as a guest, Secretary-General José Viegas reported on the ITF Summit on "Funding Transport" in May. Viegas emphasised the importance of trust between public and private partners for successful infrastructure projects, as well as the need to provide a steady pipeline of projects to diversify the risk of investing in large-scale projects. Generally, the focus of governments is shifting to better project selection, more realistic risk transfer and freedom to innovate.

Mr. Viegas held seven bilaterals, meeting with Minister Gerry Brownlee of New Zealand, the upcoming 2014/15 ITF Presidency country, and Minister Maksim Sokolov of Russia. Viegas also exchanged views with Senior Vice-Minister Hiroshi Kajiyama of Japan, US Deputy Secretary of Transport John Porcari, Vice-Minister Yeo Hyung-ku of Korea, Mexican Undersecretary of Transport, Carlos F. Almada, and Andrew Wilson, Deputy Secretary of Infrastructure and Transport, Australia. Three further meetings with top executives from NYK Line, Hitachi and Mitsui focused on ITF's new outreach mechanism for the private sector, the Corporate Partnership Board (CPB).

Go to José Viegas' presentation "Improving the Environment for Investment"

Go to APEC-TMM8 website