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Which Access to Which Assets for an Effective Liberalization of the Railway Sector?


  • Patrice Bougette

    (Université Côte d'Azur

  • Axel Gautier

    (HEC Liège, University of Liège, LCII
    CORE (UCLouvain
    CESifo (Munich))

  • Frédéric Marty

    (Université Côte d'Azur, France


In the European rail industry, to enable competition in the market, entrants should be granted access to a large set of complementary services, beyond access to the tracks. For an efficient and effective entry, temporary access to quasi-essential complementary assets like rolling stock, mechanical maintenance workshops, data, schedules, etc. is required. In the liberalized rail sector, several observed anticompetitive practices involve distorted access to these quasi-essential facilities. Therefore, competition agencies must deal with litigation between the incumbent and new entrants. Most cases have been settled, resulting in commitments from the incumbent. We argue that such transitory and case-by-case remedies fail to produce favorable conditions for a secure and efficient entry. Thus, we propose to systematize such remedies through asymmetric and enduring ex-ante regulation.

Suggested Citation

  • Patrice Bougette & Axel Gautier & Frédéric Marty, 2019. "Which Access to Which Assets for an Effective Liberalization of the Railway Sector?," GREDEG Working Papers 2019-38, Groupe de REcherche en Droit, Economie, Gestion (GREDEG CNRS), Université Côte d'Azur, France, revised Feb 2021.
  • Handle: RePEc:gre:wpaper:2019-38

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item


    rail; liberalization; essential facility; anticompetitive practices; asymmetric regulation;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • K21 - Law and Economics - - Regulation and Business Law - - - Antitrust Law
    • L51 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy - - - Economics of Regulation
    • L92 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Railroads and Other Surface Transportation
    • L98 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Government Policy

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