Business

Eurostar passenger figures topped 10 million in 2013

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Media captionEurostar boss Nicolas Petrovic says he welcomes new competition from Deutsche Bahn

Cross-channel train operator Eurostar says it carried more than 10 million passengers last year for the first time, as the economic recovery lifted demand for business travel.

Revenues from ticket sales rose 7% to £857m ($1.4bn) in 2013, while operating profit was up 4% to £54m.

Passenger numbers hit 10.1 million - the first time Eurostar has broken the 10 million mark since it began in 1994.

Eurostar said it was being helped by the economic recovery.

"After a period of economic uncertainty, we are now starting to see more confidence in the business market," said Eurostar chief executive Nicolas Petrovic.

"In comparison with this time last year, when the overriding sentiment was still very cautious, there are more encouraging trends, and in some sectors, there is clearly a greater appetite to invest and look for business."

Revenues from business traffic were up by 6.2% from the year before.

The company said the increase pointed towards growing demand for services from business travellers, particularly those based in the UK where the recovery "has a stronger foothold".

Since 1994, Eurostar has carried 140 million passengers.

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