New group plans Channel ferry service

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DFDS and Louis Dreyfus Armateurs are planning to start a new ferry service on the Dover – Calais route following the liquidation of SeaFrance.

“Our intention is to operate two ships under the French flag to be manned with French seafarers. To open a new route, and provide an attractive service for customers, we aim to hire about 300 staff and expect to be able to start the recruitment process soon,” they said in a statement.

The two organisations formed a joint venture last year to bid for some of the SeaFrance but the bid was rejected by the commercial court of Paris in December.

They believe the underlying industrial logic joint venture has remains intact and consequently they are continuing to pursue opportunities to establish a new route between Dover and Calais.

The new route would be operated by vessels currently owned by the joint venture or vessels available on the market.

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