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Costa, San Giorgio del Porto team to boost Marseille repair capacity

Drydock 10 - Mediterranean's largest graving dock
San Giorgio del Porto and Costa Crociere inked an agreement to develop a world-class center for ship repair and conversion at Chantier Naval de Marseille. Costa will take a one-third stake in the yard with an initial €10m investment to boost efficiency with the latest technology.

Costa said its investment will enable Dock 10 to accommodate big ships, benefiting the entire shipping industry.

San Giorgio del Porto, part of Genova Industrie Navali, is a leading European company for ship repair and conversion, dismantling/recycling and construction.

For the Costa Group, the investment represents a further step toward more advanced technical management of its fleet. Seven new ships are on order—three for AIDA Cruises, two for Costa and two for Costa Asia—that will bring the fleet to a total of about 110,000 berths. Four of the ships will be powered by LNG.

San Giorgio del Porto is exporting Italian ship repair excellence to Marseilles, where the port's infrastructure enables expansion into new markets, said Ferdinando Garre, ceo of San Giorgio del Porto.

'With the establishment of Chantier Naval de Marseille in recent years, we have laid the foundation to create a center that specializes in ship transformation and repair. The new partnership with a major player such as Costa Crociere strengthens this project and enables the creation of a truly world-class ship repair and conversion [center], a global point of reference open to all shipowners and all market segments,' Garre continued.

Costa Group ceo Michael Thamm called the partnership a 'milestone' and said it will ensure best-in-class management of maintenance activities for Costa ships, including the next-generation vessels coming in future years.

Chantier Naval de Marseille operates three drydocks, including No. 10, the biggest graving dock in the Mediterranean with dimensions of 465 meters by 85 meters.

Chantier Naval de Marseille was founded by San Giorgio del Porto in 2010 and employs about 120 people, including naval architects, mechanical engineers and specialized technicians. The yard is located in a strategic position, at the center of a bustling traffic zone extending from Genoa to Barcelona.