San Giorgio del Porto and Costa Crociere have signed an agreement for the "development of a world-class center for ship repair and conversion," according to a statement.

Costa has thus taken a 33.3 percent share in the Chantier Naval de Marseille company based in Marseille and controlled by the Genoese San Giorgio del Porto.

"The agreement between San Giorgio del Porto and Costa Crociere for the strengthening of Chantier Naval de Marseille calls for an initial investment of 10 million Euros aimed at increasing the efficiency of the shipyard with the best available technologies," said Costa. "The investment will generate volumes and a scale that will allow the entire shipping industry to take advantage of the facilities for any type of vessel and maximize the potential of the basin n.10 able to accommodate big ships. The investment will also create a positive impact in terms of direct and indirect employment."

"The Italian ship repair industry is an excellence that San Giorgio del Porto has also exported to Marseilles, where the infrastructural features of the port allow for a business expansion to new market segments. 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 enablesthe creation of a truly world-class ship repair and conversion pole, aglobal point of reference open to all  ship-owners and all market segments," said Ferdinando Garrè, San Giorgio del Porto CEO.

“Costa Group is the leader in the European market and is pursuing a strategy based on innovation to be the forward-thinking company of the industry. This strategic partnership, the very first of this kind for the Costa Group, represents a milestone for our future operations and will ensure best in classmanagement of all the necessary maintenance activities on our ships, including the next generation ships that we will receive in the next few years.I am sure that this partnership will bring a great added-value to both Companies and new opportunities to build an innovative and efficient shipyard," stated Michael Thamm, Costa Crociere CEO.

Chantier Naval de Marseille operates three dry docks, including dockn.10, the biggest graving dock in the Mediterranean seawith dimensions of 465 by 85 meters.