Since the opening of the Channel Tunnel almost 30 years ago, Getlink (Formerly Eurotunnel) may have finally understood the need to make it easier to run more passenger trains through the tunnel. Evolyn, Heuro, Swiss Federal Railways and Virgin all announced last year tentative plans to launch new services via the tunnel. HS1 who own St Pancras International Station and the high-speed line to the tunnel have also stated that they want to increase their income from track access charges paid by train operators. Will this mean that some of the many barriers for new entrants to this market will finally be removed?

Getlink plan to double the number of high-speed electric trains using the tunnel during the next 10 years, having recently boosted the power supply in the tunnel. They are even considering running their own services, as they have identified what they see as a profitable market between London, Cologne and Frankfurt. They are also hoping to “harmonise” the “tunnel-specific” regulations to bring them more into line with general EU standards for rolling stock.

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