Railways are one of the most sustainable and safest forms of transport for people and freight. They account for only 0.4% of the greenhouse gas emitted by transport. Railways are used by 7% of EU passengers, and 17% of goods in the European Union are transported by rail. In the Czech Republic, the use of rail transport has increased over 40% for passengers and 13% for freight since the country joined the European Union in 2004, despite steadily rising car use and truck transport.

Czech rail growth has been driven by sectoral reform, extensive EU investment and substantial improvement in the frequency and quality of trains. Over the last 17 years, Czech authorities have benefited from more than 50 JASPERS technical advisory assignments for the railway sector.



In 2023, the Czech Republic took a major step to support the European Green Deal when it signed its largest-ever loan with the EIB, a €992 million deal to modernise and extend the rail network. The funding will significantly improve train travel and encourage a bigger shift to rail transport.

The investments will reduce travel times and eliminate bottlenecks on the Trans-European Transport (TEN-T) network, increase the safety of rail crossings, boost cybersecurity, and make it easier for people with disabilities and families with children to use the trains.

Six JASPERS advisory assignments have supported projects covered under the new loan. JASPERS experts focused on helping to develop upgrades to parts of the TEN-T network, including Prague-Plzeň. They also worked on substantial enhancements to Prague’s network, such as the modernisation of Smichov Station, the upgrade of the southern freight bypass, and a line upgrade from the centre of Prague to Kladno, with a new branch to Prague Airport. This railway infrastructure is expected to carry over 60 000 passengers daily and shift 10 000 city car trips to the railway.