The impact of market opening on the supply of interregional train services

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - europe, mode - rail, organisation - competition, organisation - regulation, organisation - privatisation


Deregulation, Open access, On-track competition, Passenger rail, Interregional transport, Transit


A stepwise deregulation of all interregional passenger rail services in Sweden was legally completed in 2010. The incumbent operator (SJ) thereby lost the sole rights to commercial services. The most evident supply increase is the establishment of services in the low-cost niche, which rather complements than competes with the incumbent’s supply. Public Transport Authorities’ (PTAs) joint services have however resulted in strong competition on at least one main line.

Despite a period of almost five years since deregulation, the potential effects of the market opening have not yet fully materialised. The business risk for commercial rail operators seems to be much greater than for other modes like air and long distance coach services. SJ have also during decades of deregulated intermodal and years of intramodal competition developed their products and skills and seem well prepared for competition.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by Elsevier, copyright remains with them.


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