Ports of Normandy Authority (PNA), the body owning and running the French ports of Caen-Ouistreham and Cherbourg, intends to work more closely with Portsmouth, the premier cross-Channel port on the British side. In order to better understand the expectations, needs and motivations of each party, the managers of PNA welcomed their English counterparts, who came to Caen on 26 January 2011.
Jean-Michel Sevin, Director-General of PNA, was very satisfied with the way things developed on the day, and commented: “This first meeting illustrates the mutually shared interests of the two port hubs. We have the will to create a sustained relationship with the port of Portsmouth, which is one of our main destinations. We wish to work with [ports in southern] England in the spirit of a border region, in order to strongly develop our exchanges.”
The ports of Caen-Ouistreham and Cherbourg, which are owned and run by PNA, account for the largest part of cross-Channel traffic to (and from) the port of Portsmouth. With more than 1,240,000 passengers who sailed on the Caen-Ouistreham/Portsmouth and Cherbourg/Portsmouth lines in 2010, Portsmouth, on the coast of southern England, is fast becoming the leading British port for cross-Channel traffic, to the west of the waterway.
PNA-operated ports play a major role in the maritime trade of northern France. The two Basse-Normandie ports have the advantage of a privileged geographical position, thanks especially to their proximity to England, which facilitates the development of the cross-Channel passenger traffic, with or without vehicles, as well as roll-on/roll-off flows of freight.
It seems essential that the two Port Authorities should work together. That is why PNA welcomed the managers of the Port of Portsmouth to Caen on 26 January 2011. It was a busy and exciting day, the aim of which was to initiate a first contact and to define common areas and shared priorities for future development and growth.
The meeting, facilitated by Lesley Coutts, responsible for international relations within the city council of Caen, began on the premises of PNA, with a general introduction to the facilities, together with a presentation of the objectives and aims of PNA. Afterwards, a visit of the Caen-Ouistreham port installations took place. This included the cross-Channel terminal, where the delegation, at the end of the afternoon, took the ferry back to Portsmouth.
This preliminary contact gave participants the opportunity to identify matters of common interest, which will be the subject of future joint reflections and projects. The January meeting between the two Port Authorities will not remain without a follow-up, since PNA has already announced a cross-Channel trip for its senior executives, due to take place in the not-too-distant future, which will take an official PNA delegation to Portsmouth.
Photo: The managers of PNA, accompanied by the English delegation from the Port of Portsmouth, beside the Caen-Ouistreham canal.
The ports of Caen-Ouistreham and Cherbourg are owned and run by Ports Normands Associés, known in English as the Ports of Normandy Authority (PNA). PNA’s head office is in Caen.
The historic region of Normandy is currently made up of two separate regions: Lower Normandy (Basse-Normandie, in French) and Upper Normandy (Haute-Normandie). The ports of Caen-Ouistreham and Cherbourg are located on the north-west coast of France and face southern England, on the other side of the English Channel. They belong to the western, maritime part of Basse-Normandie.
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Ms Mary-Ann WILLIAMS - Press Officer
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