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As lockdown restrictions ease and we start to consider travelling again, the future of cross-Channel operator Eurostar remains uncertain.
Eurostar is seeking financial support from the UK Government, citing higher access charges here as a reason.
The French Government has pledged to provide support for the operator, while £200 million has been provided by one of its shareholders, Caisse de Dépôt et Placement du Québec (CDPQ) and Hermes Infrastructure.
Registered in the UK and supporting 3,000 jobs either with the business or in the supply chain, the company is, however, 55% owned by SNCF (French state rail), 40% by CDPQ/Hermes and 5% by SNCB (Belgian state railways).
So: Should the UK Government provide financial assistance to Eurostar?

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Higher demand for public transport in European Union

A study by the International Association of Public Transport (UITP) reveals that 57.9 billion journeys were made on public transport in the European Union in 2014, the highest since 2000.

UITP said the figures mark the first year of distinct growth in demand for public transport following years of stable demand caused by the recession.

The figures, released on June 20, reveal that the highest demand for bus, tram, metro and suburban rail was in Germany (10.9 billion journeys), followed by the UK (7.7 billion) and France (7.6 billion). 

  • For more on this, read RAIL 804, published on July 6.

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