French ports in Swiss rail shuttle launch

Marseille Fos already offers more than 200 container shuttle options per week throughout France Photo: Marseille Port Authority Marseille Fos already offers more than 200 container shuttle options per week throughout France Photo: Marseille Port Authority
Industry Database

A new rail shuttle linking the leading French container ports Marseille Fos and Le Havre with Switzerland is being launched to extend and make the port hinterlands greener.

The joint initiative with intermodal operator Naviland Cargo, meets the French government’s policy to extend the port hinterlands into the heart of Europe through the development of eco-friendly combined transport services

With three round trips per week, the France Helvetia Express service will operate between Dijon Gevrey in mid-France – where rail shuttles serving each port will connect and the Chavornay combined transport terminal near Lausanne, in Switzerland’s French-speaking region.

Reduced transit

Only a fraction of the estimated potential Swiss box traffic of 350,000 to 400,000 teu per year is currently handled by the French ports.

Reduced transit times are expected to play a major part in capturing increased market share, particularly for Mediterranean-routed trades via Marseille Fos and North/South America traffic through Le Havre.

Capacity on each train will be up to 42 teu with the France Helvetia shuttle providing annual capacity equivalent to 12,000 trucks.

Marseille Fos already offers more than 200 container shuttle options per week throughout France and also in northern Europe, notably through ‘fresh food corridors’ with Zeebrugge, Rotterdam, Hamburg and Lubeck.

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