Groupe Eurotunnel SA said it will seek a buyer for its MyFerryLink business after a U.K. court upheld a regulator’s decision blocking it from operating cross-channel sailings between Dover and Calais.
The ruling from the U.K. Competition Appeal Tribunal today requires the company to cease operations on the route within six months, Eurotunnel — whose Channel Tunnel shuttle trains compete with ferries — said in a statement.
The court backed a ruling from a U.K. antitrust regulator that said Eurotunnel’s acquisition of SeaFrance amounted to a merger, rather than just a purchase of ships, and affirmed a 10-year prohibition on it entering the Dover-Calais ferry market.
“This decision is illogical,” Eurotunnel said in the statement. “It reduces competition across the short straits and it is contrary to the interests of free trade. The CAT is forcing Groupe Eurotunnel to withdraw from this activity.”
Eurotunnel had argued that the U.K. competition watchdog didn’t have jurisdiction because SeaFrance had ceased business when its vessels were bought by Eurotunnel and the watchdog mischaracterized the transaction as a merger.
–With assistance from Christopher Jasper in London.
This article was written by Andrea Gerlin from Bloomberg and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.