Geschäftsführung LCAS Mag. Julia Feinig-Freunschlag und Udo Tarmann, MSc
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First pilot train rolls over rail customs corridor


Fürnitz, December 12, 2023. It is a first in European customs: The rail customs corridor, which is unique in the EU, between the port in Trieste and the logistics hub LCA-Süd in Villach/Fürnitz is going into pilot operation after years of joint commitment from all those involved in the project. A Stirian industrial company is the first to use the pilot shuttle to transport its goods in containers the 190 kilometer long route from the port of Trieste to Fürnitz in an environmentally friendly manner by rail via the rail customs corridor instead of by road, thereby making a valuable contribution to climate change.

The main goals of the corridor are, on the one hand, to accelerate logistical and customs processing in both Italy and Austria and to strengthen the respective economic locations. It is now possible to transport goods from third countries from the container ship in the port of Trieste directly by rail to Austria to the Villach Süd logistics hub without stopping and only subject them to customs procedures there.

Julia Feinig-Freunschlag, overall project manager for LCA and ÖBB and managing director of LCA Logistik Center Austria Süd GmbH, emphasizes the cross-border and European importance. “This historic pilot transport on Europe’s only rail customs corridor to date symbolizes an important turning point in freight transport, where synergies between multiple modes of transport, across national borders, guarantee faster, more efficient and reliable freight transport. However, the greatest achievement of the synergistic project is environmental friendliness and reducing the negative impact of heavy goods traffic on the environment. The route is currently dominated by road transport and the aim is to change this unfavorable situation. That’s why we, together with our partners, the Austrian and Italian customs authorities, the state of Carinthia, the ÖBB, the owners of the customs storage warehouses on both sides, RCA Rail Cargo Austria and Adriafer, worked to create a competitive transport offer. Our joint project will above all have a positive impact on environmental protection; CO² neutral transport is also becoming immensely more important for companies in view of the EU Taxonomy Regulation and the Supply Chain Act. We have succeeded in this very well with the first cross-border European rail customs corridor and the individual wagon subsidy, which was launched by the state of Carinthia in cooperation with the Carinthian Chamber of Commerce. We hope that this new offer to the Carinthian economy will be accepted and that the advantages of Carinthia as a business location in terms of environmental protection will be brought into greater focus.”

For Udo Tarmann, Managing Director of LCA Logistik Center Austria Süd GmbH, who launched the project together with the Port of Trieste, the pilot project is of great importance for the Fürnitz logistics hub and also for the entire logistics location of Carinthia: “The joint and Cross-border development of innovative products in rail freight transport makes sense because the applications can be tested across national borders right from the start and it is necessary to make cross-border rail transport more attractive and efficient. The basis for this was the already completed Interreg project between Austria and Italy, SmartLogi. During the cross-border logistics project, which was developed together with the Port of Trieste, the University of Klagenfurt and us, among others, the existing communication channels were analyzed and optimized using IT interfaces. This created the basis for today’s rail customs corridor, which allows the individual participants in the customs procedure to gain insight into all documents relevant to customs law using a linked IT infrastructure before the actual customs procedure. This ensures faster logistical and customs processing. There is only one such cross-border rail customs corridor in the EU, here in Fürnitz. So it’s also a very historic moment for us, as the project coordinating body.”

Logistik Center Austria Süd GmbH

The LCA Logistik Center Austria Süd GmbH (LCAS), a competence center for logistics in Carinthia, not only stands for the targeted promotion and development of the Fürnitz location of the same name, but of the entire logistics location in Carinthia. The LCAS, which is owned 50% by K-BV Kärntner Beteiligungsverwaltung and ÖBB, supports cooperation between local companies and other interested players in the field of logistics and mobility and, as a location brand, also takes on the central role of a company-neutral coordination, information and Communication platform for the logistics location Carinthia. The LCAS also supports the establishment of international, logistics-related companies and strategically supports them in their development at the location. With comprehensive services and advisory services, the targeted support and development of the over 160 hectare site in the border triangle of Austria, Italy and Slovenia is also carried out. At the intersection of the Western Balkan Corridor and the Baltic-Adriatic Axis, ÖBB operates a large marshalling yard that serves as a hub for national and international freight traffic, as well as a Terminal Service Austria (TSA) freight terminal.

Further photos during the arrival of the pilot train (photo credit: LCAS|Zmerzlikar)