Innovation for a more efficient and virtuous naval and port industry

Integrated, fluid, competitive and responsible ports are real drivers of a sustainable economy in our territories.

French ports, open to the Channel, the Atlantic, the Mediterranean and Overseas, constitute strategic assets serving foreign trade and the industrial and economic development of the country. They play a role as a sea-land interface, making it possible to irrigate the hinterlands and having a character of national sovereignty.

By their proximity to neighbouring urban areas, ports also have major responsibilities in terms of environmental protection and must be pioneers in terms of ecological and energy transitions. They must ensure the sustainability of their activities with secure infrastructure adapted to new climate challenges (rising water levels, storms, etc.) while reducing their environmental impact.

These issues have been accentuated in recent years by a regulatory context which calls for the decarbonisation of activities, which requires the development of new energies and new, cleaner fuels, for example. The transition to other alternatives is becoming essential to meet current environmental requirements.

The scope of this strategic action area concerns:

  • Port developments and infrastructure, including their integration into the environment — particularly in urban areas and through connections to the hinterland;
  • The “greenport” through the management of energy, flows and environmental impact;
  • The “smart port” through the digitisation and cybersecurity of port activities;
  • Port logistics.
  • 37

    certified projects

  • 25

    funded projects

  • 11

    key projects

  • 61

    million budgets for certified projects

Main technological challenges

  • Infrastructure: Maintaining, adapting, and/or creating infrastructure to address new challenges (energy transition, climate change, massification of goods, etc.);
  • Smartport: Continue, optimise and secure the digital transition of ports;
  • Greenport: Ensure the ecological and energy transition of ports and the ships that call there.

A territory rich in innovators

The port sector plays an important role in economic development in the Sud and Occitanie regions. This importance is manifested through the presence of maritime commercial ports such as Marseille, Toulon, Nice, Port-la-Nouvelle, Port-Vendres and Sète as well as the river pleasure and fishing ports which link these territories.

These regions historically have many skills and assets linked to industrial-port, maritime and commercial activities, embodied by a dynamic and internationally recognised fabric (SMEs, Groups, research and training organisations and ecosystem players.


The PMM Cluster also has the support of major players: Grand Port Maritime de Marseille, Port de Sète, CMA CGM, Naval Group, ATOS Ben Marine, Nexeya, Exail, MGI … making it possible to support short and medium-term innovation projects. On topics related to energy, it has close relationships with key players: France Hydrogène, EDF, ENGIE, QAIR, CEA, Schneider, Nidec…

Head of strategic action area


Deputy Director in charge of service offering and project manager DAS 6 “Ports, infrastructure and logistics”

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