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Deutsche Bahn presents 2017 Competition Report

Growing passenger numbers in local, regional and long-distance transport in Germany • German network used by 431 railways

Good economic conditions enabled the transport markets in Germany and Europe to achieve positive performance figures in 2017, in both passenger and freight traffic. According to the latest competition report on the development of rail transport in Germany and Europe, which DB presented in Brussels today, the total market for German passenger transportation recorded transport volume growth of 1.0%. Private motorised transport increased by 1.0%, while the railways surpassed this with growth of 1.7%. Air traffic experienced a loss of 0.4% in transport volume in 2017 and long-distance coach travel saw its first drop since the market was liberalised, down 4.8%.

Rising passenger numbers in local, regional and long-distance transport led to substantial growth in transport volume. DB Long Distance's transport volume was thereby up 2.6%, the number of passengers travelling with them increasing from 139 million in 2016 to 142.2 million in 2017.    

Thanks to the good economic situation, freight transport services also saw an increase on the previous year once more, up 1.8%. While rail remained at the previous year's level, the market is growing primarily due to the increase in lorry transport, which rose at an above-average rate of 2.6%. It should be noted that the Federal Statistical Office recently revised the 2016 figures for rail freight transport significantly upwards due to the scope of reporting having been increased. This means that rail is now expected to have an improved share of around 19% of the total freight transport market. However, the corrected data for 2017 will not be released by the Office until October.

For DB's rail network, these changes resulted in a slight increase in operating performance of 0.5%, bringing it to 1.073 billion train-path kilometres. The railways in the German network, of which there are now 431 (2016: 421), played a major role in this development.

Forecasts predict a further increase in traffic for 2018 and the coming years.

The 2017 Competition Report is available for download under the link on the right.