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“Cruise ships are a way to diversify tourism” (JF Suhas, Club Croisière Marseille Provence)

If we are talking about stopovers, then yes, it starts again. We should have more stopovers than in 2019. Regarding the filling of the boats, we are not worried, we see that we are not at the level of 2019. However, from May, June we think we are approaching levels of three years ago. The end of the year should hold some good surprises for us.

Are companies being pushed to change their business model? ” What they have changed is the industrial part, both on propulsion, they benefit from all available technologies, and then through the offer made to families through the customer experience. There is really an offer, luxury, premium or mass market, which is in real progress “.

The ecological transition, an innovation challenge

On the subject of the energy transition, which is a real subject taken head on by those involved in the cruise industry, Jean-François Suhas believes that beyond the energy aspect, it is above all that of respect for local populations which is taken into account. Thus LNG is 25% CO2 emissions compared to diesel, but especially reminds the president of the Cruise Club, it is emissions of NoX and Cox particles, reduced to zero. ” If today, we have this type of boat, it is because the efforts were made ten years ago », wishes to specify Jean-François Suhas, anxious to put the church back in the center of the village and to recall that to be available in 2022, the technologies have been pushed well upstream. And to recall that it is indeed the port of Marseille Fos which was a forerunner in 2017 by allowing the electrification of boats at the quay, thus becoming the leader when other ports, such as direct competitors such as Barcelona, ​​are not there. again, not before 2030.” Here too there are innovation challenges. It’s not a plug-in vacuum cleaner “.

Moreover, Marseille Fos is continuing its momentum by making two sockets available, at the end of 2024/2025, for cruise liners. ” It may still seem like a long way off, but it’s a normal path. This is complex equipment, frequency converters. But we are on this path. We know today that we will have customers “.

An economic lighthouse

Good news for the port activity which brings together 3,000 direct jobs. ” Provence is a beacon, a world landmark. We come to discover our region. One of the ways to diversify tourism is to have cruise ships. Certainly, it is necessary to regulate and everyone cannot go to the tourist points », agrees Jean-François Suhas.

And then, if it is good for tourism, the cruise activity is good for the whole economy, because it is also ” cash coming into town. Every euro that arrives in this city is a little less misery “.

A point which is also a stumbling block with the municipality of Marseille, which has removed the subsidy to Club Cruises. ” These arguments are refuted by Laurent Lhardit, the assistant to the economy “, laments Jean-François Suhas, pointing out that the studies and their economic fallout are carried out by the State and the Region. Not enough to be partisan studies, therefore. ” What I want is for the people of Marseille to be happy to receive people who come to them. I’m rather waiting for the Town Hall on clean city issues “.

An economic player every week

As a reminder, since the beginning of November, La Tribune and BFM Marseille have joined forces to offer an eco column every week, called Marseille Business, which deciphers the economy of the territory, its issues, its challenges, the successes and the problems. Every Tuesday, a guest comes to shed light on a specific theme.

The column is moderated by Sophie Hebrard for BFM Marseille and Laurence Bottero, editor-in-chief of the Provence Alpes Côte d’Azur office of the business daily La Tribune.

BFM Marseille Provence: channel 30 of TNT Régionale, box channels 284/516 (SFR), 375 (Orange), 362 (Bouygues), 916 (Free), on bfmmarseille.com, in replay on the free VOD platform “RMC BFM PLAY” and the dedicated application to download.