France’s railway supply industry ranks second in Europe and is the world’s third largest, with an annual turnover of around €4 billion. Up to one third of its output is for export. The sector directly employs more than 30,000 people and supports close to 84,000 jobs on the national territory. The government is currently evaluating a comprehensive strategy to overhaul the rail transport system around three main objectives: refocusing rail transport on its area of relevance, creating the conditions for a return to economic equilibrium, and preparing for the opening to competition.
The French Rail Market
Lille – hub of France’s rail supply industry
Lille Grand Palais Exhibition Centre is the dedicated venue for all recent SIFER events. Located at the heart of the Hauts de France region, it is the leading centre for the rail supply industry in France. Companies based there, from large manufacturers and equipment suppliers to over 200 SMEs/SMIs, account for 40% of the national railway manufacturing activity. The region is also home to research organisations developing the cutting-edge technologies that will help shape tomorrow’s railways.
SIFER, the showcase of a major market
France is one of Europe’s major rail markets. Investment continues in national and urban networks, creating great opportunities for companies providing innovative solutions to performance, economic and safety needs. For companies serving this market, SIFER provides a unique showcase for their capabilities. Well established for 20 years as the essential industry meeting place, it is France’s only regular exhibition devoted entirely to railway technology, attracting senior managers and engineers with real purchasing and decision-making authority.
"Our main focus this year was on Innovation as a means of enhancing network performance. In choosing this theme, we wanted to show that SNCF Réseau is making good progress, especially in terms of technology and digitalisation."
"We have attended SIFER as visitors in the past, but this is the first year that we attended as an exhibitor. Given the very positive outcome of these last 3 days, it is highly likely that we will be back again in two years."
"We were very pleased with the way the exhibition was organised in general, which made it easy to meet visitors and other exhibitors. In that sense, it really is an event that promotes the exchange of ideas. The associated events were also very interesting as well."
"We have been exhibiting at SIFER for more than 15 years. It is an event we cannot afford to miss and, as France's leading rail industry exhibition, we owe it to ourselves to attend. We were very satisfied with this year’s quality of attendance ; we met a lot of interested and interesting people. We will definitely be back in 2021!”