The government will pay £33m to Eurotunnel in an agreement to settle a lawsuit over extra ferry services in the event of a no-deal Brexit. In December, the Department for Transport (DfT) contracted three suppliers to provide additional freight capacity for lorries. Eurotunnel said the contracts were handed out in a “secretive” way.
As part of the agreement, Eurotunnel has agreed to make some improvements at its terminal.One of the firms awarded a contract, Seaborne Freight, has already had its deal cancelled after the Irish company backing it pulled out.Shortly after it was awarded the contract, the BBC found out that Seaborne had no ships and had never run a ferry service.
Transport Secretary Chris Grayling has been heavily criticised for the Seaborne deal, which would have been worth £13.8m. In January, Eurotunnel wrote to Mr Grayling to complain that it had not been considered when the contracts were awarded. It argued that unlike Seaborne, it has actually run a cross-Channel ferry service (MyFerryLink, which closed in 2015) and should have been approached.