Eurotunnel reverses market trend

Channel Tunnel operator Eurotunnel has reported a 5% increase in the number of cars using its service.

The cross-channel car market suffered a 2% decline during the first half of the year as business travel and tourism was affected by economic uncertainty to a certain extent.

However, Eurotunnel managed to buck the trend by recording an increase in car volumes in the January-June period.

This is compared with figures registered in 2010 when more people drove to the continent because Iceland's volcanic ash cloud caused flight cancellations and delays.

Company spokesman John Keefe said the faster speed and better service offered by the Channel Tunnel has helped it win about 50% of the car market across the channel.

The long Easter and royal wedding bank holidays also boosted the firm's performance during the second quarter of 2011.

The growth in car passenger trips led to a "very satisfying" performance during the first six months of the year, with a 22% rise in revenues to 396 million euros (£348.9 million).

Meanwhile, underlying profits shot up 37% to 189 million euros (£166.5 million).

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