With the Business Plan, drawn up in accordance with the railway infrastructure development strategy defined by the Ministry of Sustainable Infrastructure, Rete Ferroviaria Italiana fulfils its obligations under Article 15 paragraphs 5 and 6 of Legislative Decree no. 112 of 15th July 2015 – Implementation of Directive 2012/34/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 21st November 2012, establishing a single European railway area (Recast). 

In accordance with Article 8(1) of the Directive, Member States shall in fact develop their national railway infrastructure through the “indicative infrastructure development strategy” in order to meet future mobility needs in terms of maintenance, renewal and development of the infrastructure on the basis of sustainable financing of the railway system. As part of this strategy, covering a period of at least 5 years, the government, through the Programme Contract, provides the Infrastructure Manager with sufficient funding according to the tasks of the Network Manager, who in turn draws up the Business Plan.

What is the Business Plan and what is its purpose?

Guided by the rail infrastructure development strategy defined by the State in the Strategic Document for Rail Mobility, which sets out the needs for rail passenger and freight mobility, the Plan describes the operations envisaged for developing the network and the objectives associated therewith, aimed at ensuring the optimal and efficient use, provision and development of the infrastructure.

The actions and measures indicated in the document have at least one functional phase of execution financed as part of the 2020–2021 update of the 2017–2021 Programme Contract – investment component and are due to be primarily implemented between 2022 and 2026.

To whom is it addressed?

The focus is railway transport companies, local authorities and all interested parties who are thus able to plan their business better in terms of transport services, being aware of the developments in infrastructure in the near future.

In line with the provisions of RFI’s Business Plan, its publication makes all the information on railway infrastructure and its development available and more easily accessible.

How is it structured?

In order to represent the development of the network from the perspective of the customer, the Business Plan describes the actions that RFI is enacting according to the three business lines: Local Public Transport, Long Distance, and Freight.  The 2022 edition also includes a new chapter outlining the main plans for development at a national level, which impact all three businesses across the board.

 Local Public Transport. With over 16,000 kilometres of network and more than 2,000 access points serving passengers, 206 million train-kilometres for Local Public Transport were effectuated in 2021. This annual output, equal to about 50% of the volumes circulating on the network managed by RFI, is the most important traffic segment. With the aim of improving quality standards to revitalise the sector, RFI’s main actions to develop the Local Public transport business involve:

  • enhancing integration between rail and road
  • increasing node capacity
  • educing major interference between flows
  • speeding up suburban routes
  • developing interchange points in the urban area
  • improving the accessibility of in-station services, both for Railway Companies and for passengers.


Long-distance. In the current timetable, there are more than 400 trains as part of the High-Speed service. In addition, are some 90 trains per day on the National and International Open Access service and over 110 trains a day on the Universal service, for a total of around 600 trains daily. RFI is committed to increasing the network’s performance of the network to make the transport system more competitive by:

  • upgrading the performance and development of the HS/CA network
  • speeding up HS line sections
  • upgrading the main long-distance traffic routes
  • eliminating interference and traffic conflicts
  • upgrading the entire national network to ERTMS


Freight. The freight network has around 189 freight stations, to which more than 380 terminal facilities are connected, including private sidings, freight yards, ports and villages. In recent years, one of the main challenges for the European Union and its member states has been the modal rebalancing of passenger and freight transport in favour of more sustainable transport systems. To improve interconnections between national networks, the European Commission has identified the Trans-European Transport Networks (TEN-T), a set of linear (rail, road and river) and punctual (urban nodes, ports, freight villages and airports) infrastructure considered “relevant” at an EU level. By 2030, RFI will adapt the more than 5,000 km of the TEN-T Core Network to the quality standards required by the EU. In this context, to generate/attract new traffic by placing the Italian peninsula at the centre of freight transport streams from the Far East to Central Europe, the freight transport development plan is based on three fundamental pillars:

  • improved performance of the network
  • development of the main port and land logistics terminals
  • widespread development of links with industrial districts


National Plans. This new section describes the main development plans that RFI is enacting throughout the entire network, which have traversal benefits on the three service businesses:

  • level-crossing abolition plan
  • breakthrough Programme
  • ERTMS implementation plan
  • migration plan from SSC to SCMT
  • plan to upgrade the electric traction system for heavy freight trains
  • the Intermodal hub and metro line plan for the development of sustainable mobility
  • the functional upgrading and improvement plan for accessibility and intermodality in southern stations
  • the plan to enhance extra PMdA (Minimum Access Package) services

► Main modifications compared to previous versions. Many changes have been made to the document compared to the February 2021 version. Firstly, is the inclusion of the information reported in the Business Plan – Extraordinary Edition of the National Recovery and Resilience Plan, published by RFI in August 2021 following the launch of Italy’s National Recovery and Resilience Plan.

In addition, a new chapter titled “National Plans” has been added, describing the main development propositions that RFI is enacting across the entire network. Finally, a glossary and list of changes from the previous version of the document have been included.