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Friday, May 21, 2021 

DFDS has taken delivery in China, six weeks ahead of schedule, of the combined freight and passenger ferry 'Côte d'Opale', which DFDS will operate on the English Channel under a long-term charter agreement with Stena RoRo.

At 216m, Côte d'Opale will be the longest ferry currently operating on English Channel. It is shortly to embark on its voyage to Europe, ready to begin service on the Dover – Calais route during summer 2021.

“With capacity for 160 trailers and space for 1000 passengers and crew, the Côte d'Opale is a fine example of how we combine cargo and passenger traffic without compromising the onboard experience. We appreciate Stena's E-Flexer design, which has made it possible to adapt the ferry, in collaboration with Stena, to the wishes associated with the short crossings across the Channel” said DFDS CEO Torben Carlsen. “With this ferry, we will be able to offer our passengers a comfortable journey and an extraordinary shopping experience while accommodating growth and increasing operational efficiency. Due to the large capacity, energy consumption per trailer transported will be significantly decreased compared to Calais Seaways that will be replaced by Côte d'Opale.”

The E-Flexer design has been adapted for this short sea route, on which passenger cabins are not needed, so instead additional space is provided to allow passengers to travel in a Covid-19 secure way. The bow and stern are especially designed to fit the quayside facilities in both ports, and in addition, it is equipped with a third bow thruster to facilitate the many daily manoeuvres in port.

CEO Stena RoRo Per Westling said: “Our focus is to adapt the design to our customers' specific wishes, and together with DFDS, we have jointly adapted the ferry’s unique design. In addition to far-reaching demands regarding the environmental aspects and technology, flexibility is one of the main characteristics of the E-Flexer class.”

To date, Stena RoRo has ordered nine large ro-pax vessels of the E-Flexer type, five of which have now been delivered from the Chinese shipyard CMI Jinling (Weihai).

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