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  1. ITV Report

National Express sells c2c group to Italian operator

National Express is selling its sell its c2c rail operation to Italy's Trenitalia.

The sale of the c2c franchise, which runs from the City of London to Essex, signals National Express's exit from the UK rail market.

Trenitalia joins a string of European state-owned operators running services in the UK.

Dean Finch, chief executive of National Express Group, said c2c was the UK's best performing franchise, but the deal provided "opportunities for all concerned".

Commuters waiting for a train on the c2c line at Upminster station Credit: PA

We see significant chances to invest in UK rail and this in-principle agreement with National Express allows us to foster these ambitions," she said.

We are also closely monitoring the Railways Franchising Programme as we intend to participate in tenders issued by the DfT to strengthen our presence in UK.

– Barbara Morgante, Trenitalia