The project

Connecting two of Europe’s most important industrial regions

The basins of the Seine and the Scheldt are two of Europe’s most important industrial regions. Yet at present there is still no navigable waterway for large container and push-towing ships between the two regions. France, Wallonia and Flanders are setting up the project Seine Scheldt to remedy this. In this way, Flanders, which is the gateway to the whole Scheldt and Rhine delta in the Netherlands and Germany, will be linked to Le Havre, Rouen and Paris.


In France, the navigable Seine-Scheldt route runs from Paris northwards as far as the Belgian border. A completely new canal 106 kilometres long (the Seine-Nord Europe Canal) – currently a missing link – will be dug between Compiègne and Cambrai.

Wallonia and Flanders

The route enters Belgium via the River Lys at Deûlemont and runs across Wallonian territory to Wervik. It then continues via the Lys and the Lys Diversion Canal as far as the Ghent-Ostend Canal. From there it runs along the Northern section of the Ghent Ring Canal to the harbour of Ghent and up the Ghent–Terneuzen Canal to the Scheldt.


The Seine-Scheldt Project is ambitious. De Vlaamse Waterweg nv is only able to implement it thanks to its cooperation with a great many partners. The most important are:

  • European Union: Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T)
  • France: Voies Navigables de France (VNF)
  • Federal, regional and provincial: policy-makers and administrative bodies
  • Agentschap voor Natuur en Bos (ANB)
  • Vlaamse Landmaatschappij (VLM)
  • Instituut voor Natuur en Bosonderzoek (INBO)
  • Councils and civil servants in all the boroughs and towns through which the route passes
  • Special-interest groups for inland waterways, farmers, nature conservation, cyclists, tourism, etc.
  • Public transport companies
  • Engineering firms and contractors