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Eurotunnel operator blames Brexit for revenue hit

Getlink has blamed Brexit uncertainty for a 2% fall in passenger traffic across the Channel Tunnel.

The Eurotunnel operator said its revenue took an €18m (£15.2m) hit in 2019 “due to uncertainties linked to Brexit”.

Revenue from shuttle services was €629.9m (£531m) and more than 2.6 million passenger vehicles crossed through the tunnel on shuttles, both categories showing a decrease of 2% compared to 2018.

Getlink’s full-year revenues remained almost unchanged year-on-year at €1.09bn (£920m).

Jacques Gounon, chairman and chief executive of the group, said: “We estimate that the uncertainties surrounding Brexit and the social movements in France have adversely impacted the revenue by about €18m.

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“In spite of this we delivered a solid performance recording a 10th consecutive year of revenue growth.

“We shall continue to deploy our strategy in this less uncertain environment by working to improve our operational performance, serving the transition to an environmentally-focused economy.”

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The movement of freight across the Channel, however, hit an all-time monthly record in October, despite also being affected by what Getlink described as a “delicate political and social environment”.

Some 2,144 freight trains travelled through the tunnel, up 3% on the previous year.

Eurostar, which is owned by a different company but uses the same infrastructure, exceeded 11 million passengers in 2019, despite strikes by French customs officers in the spring and more recently against President Emmanuel Macron’s pension reforms.

Getlink said revenue from the railway network increased by 3% to €315.1m (£265m), driven by growth in Eurostar traffic, particularly the launch of the third daily service between London and Amsterdam.

Getlink will publish its annual results on 27 February.

SOURCE : https://news.sky.com/story/eurotunnel-operator-blames-brexit-for-revenue-hit-11915501

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