After Whitehall gave GBP 33 million to Eurotunnel in March 2019 after the Department for Transport failed to conduct a proper tender process for cross-Channel ferry crossings in case of a no-deal Brexit, P&O Ferries wanted a similar payout and has now upped its demands.
The company wants the GBP 33 million given to Eurotunnel returned, claiming it amounted to unlawful state aid.
Under the terms of the settlement the Department for Transport entered with Eurotunnel to avoid being sued, it said that the money should be spent on improving the Folkestone terminal of Eurotunnel.
P&O Ferries claims that all of Eurotunnel’s competitors should have got aid to help repair the infrastructure and is asking for a judicial review. In case P&O is successful, the government of the UK could face challenges from building and facilities management companies, that could have bid for the work at the terminal of Eurotunnel if there had been a tender process, widening the claimants over the issue.