Following the Lisbon Treaty and the 2020 Transport White Paper, the EC has a mandate to represent EU railway policy outside the EU Member States, especially in neighbouring countries (e.g. Balkans) but also in strategic markets (e.g. Asia).

DG MOVE, DG TRADE and DG GROWTH are keen to engage in constructive dialogue with non-EU countries to ensure growth, jobs and competitiveness.

An important ambition of the EU is to export European rail know-how and to expand its  flagship initiative, the European Trans-European Transport Networks (TEN-T), beyond EU borders. For that purpose, the EU engages with neighbouring countries but also trade partners and other actors on a bilateral and multilateral level.  

Within the framework of this ambition, the EU has set up various platforms addressing infrastructure issues, such as the EU-China Connectivity and the EU-Asia Connectivity Platform.


Rail infrastructure has become a strategic asset in geopolitics. The growing number of trade agreements concluded by the EU foster trade and thus the import and export of services and goods. This requires an increase in rail infrastructure capacity and better interconnectivity between EU and non-EU rail systems.

In addition,  several European rail Infrastructure Managers are eager to export their know-how to foreign countries.

EIM in action

  • EIM participates in many of the international activities of the EU related to the export / import of rail know-how and the extension of the TEN-T to non-EU countries;
  • EIM has developed a constructive dialogue with all relevant EU bodies and stakeholders to foster EU rail-know on an international level;
  • EIM is also a recognised member of various EU expert groups – for example the EU China Connectivity Platform but also various EU trade platforms.

EIM actions in 2020

  • EIM participated in all relevant international affairs-related meetings of the European Commission in 2020.
  • EIM is a recognised member of various EU expert groups, such as the EU China Connectivity Platform, the EU-Japan railway industrial dialogue, the EU expert group on the competitiveness of the European rail supply industry and the EU international working group.

Outlook 2021

  • EIM continues to be closely involved in all relevant international activities of the EU;
  • EIM continues to monitor opportunities for rail Infrastructure Managers in the international trade agreements that are put in place between the EU and certain third countries.
Strategic Vision