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French Flag Excellence Recognised Again By Merchant Navy World Ranking

July 15, 2014 Cruise No Comments Email Email

page1image32952Once again the French flag leads the field in the international Paris MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) lists. It provides further proof of the excellent standards set by this flag which reflects the commitment of French shipping companies to the environment, safety and employment laws.

Established in 1982, the Paris MoU is an international agreement signed by 27 maritime nations, covering European coastal states and those in the North Atlantic Basin from North America to Europe. Its aim is to improve standards of safety and security, as well as living and working conditions for mariners at sea, and pollution prevention measures.page1image33120

It also ensures compliance with international regulations through regular inspections of ships in Paris MoU ports. Its annual report on vessel inspections by Port State authorities is considered the global index of flag performance.

Its latest report which has just been published ranks 75 flags in three categories: white, grey and black, based on a minimum of 30 inspections over the last three years. As in 2013, the French flag achieved the highest score and leads the white list with 278 vessels having been inspected between 2011 and 2013, with no detentions. It is ahead of Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Italy in this list of 46 flags.

page1image33288The safety of passengers and crew is the number one priority for companies flying the French flag. We regularly sail to remote and rarely visited places which demand very high safety standards. Our ships are frequently inspected by port authorities and our results excellent,” says François Vielfaure, Fleet and Operation Manager at Compagnie du Ponant.


When in 1988 Jean-Emmanuel Sauvée, Philippe Videau and a dozen other Merchant Navy officers founded Compagnie du Ponant they wanted to honour the full value of this flag in perpetuating France’s great maritime tradition.

Today, Compagnie du Ponant is the No. 1 cruise line sailing under the French flag. Its ships, LE PONANT, LE BORÉAL, L’AUSTRAL, LE SOLÉAL and soon LE LYRIAL are all registered to Mata Utu (Wallis and Futuna).

We are proud to be the only cruise line sailing under the French flag since the company was established 26 years ago. We have an obligation to live up the the standards of this flag which requires perseverance and a commitment to quality,” says CEO Jean-Emmanuel Sauvée.

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