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Puig highlightes the importance of the Port of Castellon

18 January 2023

Castellon de la Plana (18.01.23). The President of the Valencian Regional Government, Ximo Puig, today announced that the Ceramic Industry Working Group will be meeting in the next few weeks to speed up the direct aid plan that is being negotiated with the tile employers’ association ASCER. This plan envisages subsidies of €5,000 per employee to mitigate the impact the energy crisis is having on this sector.

These announcements came after Puig’s visit to the Port of Castellon, where he was accompanied by the Chairman of the Port Authority of Castellon, Rafael Simó, and the Regional Minister for Territorial Policy, Public Works and Mobility, Rebeca Torró.

During the visit, Ximo Puig explained that the Institut Valencià de Finances (IVF) has already received loan applications for more than the €50 million available in the specific line of credit earmarked for the ceramic tile industry and said that these applications would be processed “as quickly as possible”. As a result of the sharp demand, he confirmed that the Valencian Government would be supplementing funding with other IVF lines of credit such as the Reactiva Feder soft loans.

Likewise, the President underscored Castellon’s industrial capacity and the development prospects for traditional sectors such as the ceramic tile industry and for those linked to energy products, as well as new industries that could be brought to the province.

Along these lines, Puig also highlighted the importance of the Port of Castellon and the above average growth it has experienced in recent years, despite the current economic situation and the profound impact it is having on the ceramic tile industry. He also underlined the Port’s excellent “future prospects”, given the planned investment of around €300 million for the rail link with the Mediterranean Corridor, which will “make PortCastelló an ideal location for reindustrialisation”.

For his part, the Chairman of the Port Authority of Castellon, Rafa Simó, detailed the different tenders required to build the southern rail access to the Port of Castellon and its connection to the Mediterranean Corridor, an infrastructure which, according to Simó, “represents the most substantial project in the history of the province of Castellon”. The Chairman of the Port Authority of Castellon also listed the energy transition and digital transformation projects that are being fostered by PortCastelló as well as the initiatives to boost port-city interaction, such as Al Port and the refurbishment of the Naval Command building.

Integrated Vocational Training Centre and new direct flights

The President explained that the port is a “key infrastructure for economic growth and job creation” and reiterated the Government’s intention to set up a new Integrated Vocational Training Centre which will become “the leading facility in the Valencian Region” for training courses in the maritime-fishing sector, as well as in other sectors related to port logistics.

Finally, Puig also announced that Castellon Airport will have new direct flights to London from next March, doubling the number of weekly connections with the British capital. He explained that Ryanair will be starting one new direct flight in March and another one this summer. Thus, Castellon will have four direct weekly connections with this destination.

The head of the Regional Government confirmed that Aerocas reached the “historic” figure of 150,000 passengers last year and praised the contribution of this “powerful infrastructure” to the development of tourism and industry.

 

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