The new competences of the regulator resulting from the 4th railway package.

The Law of January 11, 2019 transposes into Belgian law the 4th railway package, which essentially opens the market for domestic passenger transport to competition. In this context, the scope of the regulator’s powers has been broadened.

In terms of competences linked to the opening of the internal market, the regulator determines whether the operation of a new passenger transport service is likely to compromise the economic equilibrium of a public service contract.

A new consultation body between the infrastructure manager, the SPF Mobility & Transport and the train operators is also created, in which the regulator participates as an observer.

The regulator also sees its control powers expanded:
– to certain aspects relating to the maintenance of the infrastructure;
– to certain aspects concerning the management of the train traffic;
– to certain aspects related to the renewal of the infrastructure;
– to the cooperation agreements that may be concluded between the infrastructure manager and one or more train operators or between several infrastructure managers;
– to monitoring competition in domestic markets;
– to the implementation of audits on financial transparency.

In terms of governance of the infrastructure manager, the Regulatory Body is responsible for ensuring the absence of conflicts of interest by board members and certain members of personnel.