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Channel Tunnel Railway Line

Volume 495: debated on Tuesday 30 June 2009

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport what recent progress has been made towards the introduction of a direct high-speed rail service between London and Amsterdam. (283196)

The Government are currently engaged in a restructuring of London and Continental Railways. Following this, it is the Government's intention, as market conditions allow, to sell, via an open and competitive auction, a long-term concession for High Speed 1 in such a way as to maximise value for money for the taxpayer.

High Speed 1 is incentivised to maximise usage of the line, and to help operators develop new international services. London to Amsterdam is a large market under consideration by train operators. Operators that wish to utilise High Speed 1 will negotiate access rights with the holder of the concession to operate the railway.