Adif has increased the bonus that affects the amount paid to 50% Renfe for capacity allocation fees in its trains and of using long-distance lines, in order to encourage the growth of passenger rail traffic.
As a consequence of the coronavirus crisis, only in August the whole network traffic traffic on high-speed networks was reduced by 29.10% compared to the same period last year, as well as 43.29% in traffic on high-speed networks.
Due to this sinking demand, Adif has announced that it will increase up to 50% the bonus provided for in the Law of the Railway Sector and established in the Declaration on the Network, within the framework of the policies that the European Union is adopting to alleviate the economic and social crisis.
Thanks to this measure, the fees for a new high-speed service with 365 seats between Madrid and Barcelona will be reduced from 9,011 euros to 4,764 euros. In the case of a new train of this type between Madrid and Seville, the cost to the operator in terms of fees would be 2,701 euros, compared to the current rate of 5,024 euros. If it were a new service for the Madrid-Valencia route, the fees would go from 2,947 to 1,630 euros.
Following the crisis of Covid-19Renfe has been eliminating services to adapt them to demand. With this proposal, Adif and Adif High Speed (Adif AV) want to face the significant reduction in rail traffic carried out by the operator.
The proposal has already been submitted for consultation with the railway companies and a report from the Markets and Competition Commission (CNMC), which has considered that it should be positively valued that administrators use the instrument that the current regulations leave in their hands to encourage the use of the railway network by updating the parameters of the bonus system in the Network Statement.
In this sense, the agency values the increase in the percentage of discount in the Madrid-Barcelona-French border and Madrid-Andalusia corridors, which limits the demand risk faced by the operator and generates the appropriate incentives to increase its offer.
This bonus is applied to traffic that exceeds the so-called target traffic, that is, the traffic that the infrastructure managers foresee is possible. If the increase corresponds to an intermediate value between the reference traffic and the target, the bonus corresponding to the level of traffic achieved will be paid, applying a progressive system.
As a consequence of the restriction of rail services, Adif affirms that the reference traffic and the established objectives are “unreachable“, which is why it has reviewed and adjusted the evolution of the offer, in order to give the bonus enough potential to encourage railway companies to increase their service offer.
This bonus will only remain during 2020, so since Renfe is the only operator, it is the only company affected. For the moment, the bonuses will return to the previous situation in 2021, when the French operator SNCF will launch its high-speed service between Madrid and Barcelona, once the sector is liberalized next December.