News detail

17th march 2021


Several sites and facilities in Dunkerque light up in green to celebrate the grand Irish national holiday of St. Patrick's Day and the 10,000 freight units transported since January 2021 via the Dunkerque-Rosslare line (Ireland).

Invited to do so by the Irish Embassy, Dunkerque is celebrating Saint Patrick's Day on March 17 by taking part in the Global Greening, a joint initiative of Tourism Ireland, the national agency responsible for promoting tourism in Ireland, and the Irish Foreign Office. The initiative, which celebrates its 12th anniversary this year, involves lighting up major buildings in green all around the world to celebrate Ireland's National Holiday. Adding to a long list of sites around the world, Dunkerque's Town Hall, Belfry and Leughenaer Tower, as well as the three-masted Duchesse Anne and the Port Museum, Dunkerque-Port and the Irish-owned Ecocem plant have all lit up green this week to commemorate the event.

The Greening of Dunkerque and its port has a very special meaning given the high growth in shipping links between Ireland and France and the strengthening of the ties between these two countries. Especially since the milestone of 10,000 freight units was reached in early March between the port of Dunkerque and that of Rosslare. A remarkable performance in a post-Brexit context also marked by the health crisis.

For Daniel Deschodt, Interim Chair of Dunkerque-Port: “This celebration of Saint Patrick's Day and the arrival of the 10,000th unit on the Dunkerque-Rosslare line certainly mark a new stage in our already close relations with the country. I should like to thank Her Excellency the Ambassador of Ireland in Paris for having invited Dunkerque-Port to join in the Saint-Patrick's Day celebrations. I should also like to thank Patrice Vergriete, Chair of the Metropolitan Authority and Mayor of Dunkerque for being involved in this initiative, which is as original as it is symbolic, and to thank the CEO of Ecocem for his enthusiasm in participating in this high point”.

Patrice Vergriete, Chair of the Dunkerque Metropolitan Authority was equally pleased with the announcement: “The intensification and diversification of maritime trade with Ireland opens up real prospects for the economic development and creation of jobs in our region. Not only because Dunkerque is consolidating its role as a natural gateway for all transport operators working within the European area, but also because these trade relations offer a new opportunity for tourism in the Dunkerque conurbation. By becoming a port call for Irish travellers, our region can only see its international recognition increase, benefiting from the positive effects of their clientele and boosting the drive of local business."

For Conor O'Riain, Managing Director of Ecocem Europe and Ecocem France : “The people in Dunkerque have welcomed our small Irish company with open arms and we are delighted to be part of the community.  The culture here is warm, hardworking, and people love to have fun, a culture in fact very similar to that of Ireland. We immediately felt at home! I have been particularly touched by the warmth of the relationships that have built up between us and the Port of Dunkerque. St Patrick's Day gives us an opportunity to celebrate that mutual understanding, and to express our gratitude to the people of Dunkerque. But the pints will wait until the end of the lock-down!"

Attached file
406_Global_Greening_Port_EN - PDF (257.74 Kb)


Marie-Elizabeth Bogucki

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