Morocco mobilizes 32 ferries for Operation Crossing the Strait this summer

Rabat, May 7 (Latest).- Morocco today announced the mobilization of 32 ferries, with 571 weekly trips, to cover the maritime lines that connect its ports with those of Spain, France and Italy during Operation Crossing the Strait (OPE) of this summer.

The Moroccan Ministry of Transport and Logistics explained in a statement posted on the website that these ferries have a total capacity of approximately 478,000 passengers and 123,000 cars.

He explained that 23 of these ferries will operate on the maritime lines between the Maghreb country and Spain, which gather 95% of passenger traffic during the OPE, of which 14 will cover the main line Tanger Med – Algeciras. Two ships dedicated to the transport of trucks will also operate on these lines.

These ships will make 47 daily trips with a capacity of around 40,000 passengers and 11,000 cars, which means an increase of 4% compared to 2019, the year in which the last OPE was carried out.

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The note added that the advance reservation of tickets will be adopted in all these maritime lines to avoid the accumulation of passengers in the ports and in order to ensure a fluid circulation between the two shores.

Last Thursday, representatives from Spain and Morocco closed in Rabat the last joint preparations for the launch in a few weeks of this summer’s OPE.

The OPE, suspended for two consecutive years due to coronavirus, has been held since 1986 to manage the round trip of citizens of North African origin who travel from various European countries to North Africa during the summer season.

This operation represents one of the largest movements of people between continents in such a short space of time, from June to September. In 2019, 3,340,045 passengers and 760,215 vehicles crossed the Strait of Gibraltar through Spanish ports.

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