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Directive 2012/34/EU of the European Parliament and of the CouncilShow full title

Directive 2012/34/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 21 November 2012 establishing a single European railway area (recast) (Text with EEA relevance)

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Article 56U.K.Functions of the regulatory body

1.Without prejudice to Article 46(6), an applicant shall have the right to appeal to the regulatory body if it believes that it has been unfairly treated, discriminated against or is in any other way aggrieved, and in particular against decisions adopted by the infrastructure manager or where appropriate the railway undertaking or the operator of a service facility concerning:

(a)

the network statement in its provisional and final versions;

(b)

the criteria set out in it;

(c)

the allocation process and its result;

(d)

the charging scheme;

(e)

the level or structure of infrastructure charges which it is, or may be, required to pay;

(f)

arrangements for access in accordance with Articles 10 to 13;

(g)

access to and charging for services in accordance with Article 13[F1;]

(h)

[F2traffic management;

(i)

renewal planning and scheduled or unscheduled maintenance;

(j)

compliance with the requirements, including those regarding conflicts of interest, set out in Article 2(13) and Articles 7, 7a, 7b, 7c, and 7d.]

[F12. Without prejudice to the powers of the national competition authorities to secure competition in the rail services markets, the regulatory body shall have the power to monitor the competitive situation in the rail services markets, including in particular the market for high-speed passenger services, and the activities of infrastructure managers in relation to points (a) to (j) of paragraph 1. In particular, the regulatory body shall verify compliance with points (a) to (j) of paragraph 1 on its own initiative and with a view to preventing discrimination against applicants. It shall, in particular, check whether the network statement contains discriminatory clauses or creates discretionary powers for the infrastructure manager that may be used to discriminate against applicants.]

3.The regulatory body shall also cooperate closely with the national safety authority within the meaning of Directive 2008/57/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 June 2008 on the interoperability of the rail system within the Community(1), and the licensing authority within the meaning of this Directive.

Member States shall ensure that these authorities jointly develop a framework for information-sharing and cooperation aimed at preventing adverse effects on competition or safety in the railway market. This framework shall include a mechanism for the regulatory body to provide the national safety and licensing authorities with recommendations on issues that may affect competition in the railway market and for the national safety authority to provide the regulatory body and licensing authority with recommendations on issues that may affect safety. Without prejudice to the independence of each authority within the field of their respective competences, the relevant authority shall examine any such recommendation before adopting its decisions. If the relevant authority decides to deviate from these recommendations, it shall give reasons in its decisions.

4.Member States may decide that the regulatory body is given the task to adopt non-binding opinions on the provisional versions of the business plan referred to in Article 8(3), the contractual agreement and the capacity-enhancement plan to indicate in particular whether these instruments are consistent with the competitive situation in the rail services markets.

5.The regulatory body shall have the necessary organisational capacity in terms of human and material resources, which shall be proportionate to the importance of the rail sector in the Member State.

6.The regulatory body shall ensure that charges set by the infrastructure manager comply with Section 2 of Chapter IV and are non-discriminatory. Negotiations between applicants and an infrastructure manager concerning the level of infrastructure charges shall only be permitted if these are carried out under the supervision of the regulatory body. The regulatory body shall intervene if negotiations are likely to contravene the requirements of this Chapter.

7.The regulatory body shall, regularly and, in any case, at least every two years, consult representatives of users of the rail freight and passenger transport services, to take into account their views on the rail market.

8.The regulatory body shall have the power to request relevant information from the infrastructure manager, applicants and any third party involved within the Member State concerned.

Information requested shall be supplied within a reasonable period set by the regulatory body that shall not exceed one month, unless, in exceptional circumstances, the regulatory body agrees to, and authorises, a time-limited extension, which shall not exceed two additional weeks. The regulatory body shall be able to enforce such requests with appropriate penalties, including fines. Information to be supplied to the regulatory body includes all data which the regulatory body requires in the framework of its appeal function and in its function of monitoring the competition in the rail services markets in accordance with paragraph 2. This includes data which are necessary for statistical and market observation purposes.

[F19. The regulatory body shall consider any complaints and, as appropriate, shall ask for relevant information and initiate consultations with all relevant parties, within 1 month from the receipt of the complaint. It shall decide on any complaints, take action to remedy the situation and inform the relevant parties of its reasoned decision within a pre- determined, reasonable time, and, in any case, within 6 weeks from receipt of all relevant information. Without prejudice to the powers of the national competition authorities for securing competition in the rail service markets, the regulatory body shall, where appropriate, decide on its own initiative on appropriate measures to correct discrimination against applicants, market distortion and any other undesirable developments in these markets, in particular with reference to points (a) to (j) of paragraph 1.]

A decision of the regulatory body shall be binding on all parties covered by that decision, and shall not be subject to the control of another administrative instance. The regulatory body shall be able to enforce its decisions with the appropriate penalties, including fines.

In the event of an appeal against a refusal to grant infrastructure capacity, or against the terms of an offer of capacity, the regulatory body shall either confirm that no modification of the infrastructure manager's decision is required, or it shall require modification of that decision in accordance with directions specified by the regulatory body.

10.Member States shall ensure that decisions taken by the regulatory body are subject to judicial review. The appeal may have suspensive effect on the decision of the regulatory body only when the immediate effect of the regulatory body's decision may cause irretrievable or manifestly excessive damages for the appellant. This provision is without prejudice to the powers of the court hearing the appeal as conferred by constitutional law, where applicable.

11.Member States shall ensure that decisions taken by the regulatory body are published.

[F112. In order to verify compliance with accounting separation provisions laid down in Article 6 and provisions on financial transparency laid down in Article 7d, the regulatory body shall have the power to carry out audits or initiate external audits with infrastructure managers, operators of service facilities and, where relevant, railway undertakings. In the case of vertically integrated undertakings, those powers shall extend to all legal entities. The regulatory body shall be entitled to request any relevant information. In particular the regulatory body shall have the power to request infrastructure manager, operators of service facilities and all undertakings or other entities performing or integrating different types of rail transport or infrastructure management as referred to in Article 6(1) and (2) and Article 13 to provide all or part of the accounting information listed in Annex VIII with a sufficient level of detail as deemed necessary and proportionate.

Without prejudice to the powers of the national authorities responsible for State aid issues, the regulatory body may also draw conclusions from the accounts concerning State aid issues which it shall report to those authorities.

Financial flows referred to in Article 7d(1), loans referred to in Article 7d(4) and (5), and debts referred to in Article 7d(7) shall be subject to monitoring by the regulatory body.

Where a Member State has designated the regulatory body as the independent competent body referred to in Article 7c(4), the regulatory body shall assess the cooperation agreements referred to in that Article.]

13.The Commission shall be empowered to adopt delegated acts in accordance with Article 60 concerning certain amendments to Annex VIII. Thus, Annex VIII may be amended to adapt it to the evolution of accounting and control practices and/or to supplement it with additional elements necessary to verify separation of accounts.

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