Jul 10, 2023, 8:43:00 AM
Carlos Botana Lagarón was sworn in as the new president of the Port
Authority of Vigo at the Vigo Maritime Station this afternoon, replacing Jesús
Vázquez Almuiña at the helm of the institution.
Hundreds of attendees wanted to show their support for the new port
authority leader, including the President of Xunta, Alfonso Rueda; the
President of Ports of the State, Álvaro Rodríguez Dapena; and the Conselleiro
do Mar, Alfonso Villares. Alongside them were former presidents of the Vigo
Port Authority, mayors from the port's service area, and a wide representation
of the city's business, economic, social, and political sectors.
After taking his oath of office, Botana Lagarón referred to the beginning of
"a new era" that will be marked by dialogue and consensus, where he
will prioritize "active listening" to "design innovative
solutions" and create "the port of the future." He emphasized,
"All of you are essential, and without you, this port of the present and
future would not be possible." He expressed pride in the port, stating
that there are significant challenges and much work ahead, which he will
approach with enthusiasm, passion, and determination.
According to the new port president, Vigo has "a unique fishing port
with infinite potential," excels in the automotive industry, and is a
reference point on the Atlantic coast. Additionally, it has a naval sector
"with extensive experience and great opportunities with the energy
He emphasized the need to preserve what needs to be preserved to continue
working tomorrow and expressed his optimism and desire to spread that optimism
to the sector. He stressed the importance of maintaining the splendor of the
fish market and highlighted the possibilities of the younger generation taking
Botana also mentioned the importance of guaranteeing the best
infrastructure to benefit the logistics and employment of one of the most
important companies in Vigo and its port, referring to Stellantis.
He also emphasized the significance of the construction and shipbuilding
sector for Vigo, Galicia, and the opportunities presented by the energy
transition. He stated that the ships of the future are green and will be built
Commitment to Blue Growth
To this end, the port chief advocated continuing to support the European
strategy for a sustainable blue economy, which has been led by the Vigo port
since 2016, and to strengthen the inclusive and social aspect promoted by his
predecessor in the post, Jesús Vázquez Almuiña.
"At the Port of Vigo we have been working on environmental
sustainability for years," he emphasised. "We are a European example
and the Port of Vigo's climate change office will become a reality".
In this context, Botana committed himself "personally" to ensuring
that any action carried out in the Estuary has the minimum environmental
impact. "Always in a sustainable, efficient way and as a result of
dialogue and consensus with companies and administrations".
Connectivity: necessary and a priority
However, he considered it "necessary" and a "priority"
to improve the connectivity of the port. "We cannot and must not give up
on having a port connected by rail with the PLISAN and the Atlantic Corridor,
but we will do it through innovative and imaginative solutions and with the
maximum dialogue and consensus".
"Between all of us, we must build the port of the future". A port
that is "efficient, sustainable, respectful of the environment and adapted
to new technologies" and, for this, "we must go hand in hand with
universities and technology centres". "We believe in talent and we
want it in our port".
Likewise, he advanced that from the institution that he presides "we
will continue to commit ourselves to internationalisation", for which
"we will reinforce this positioning and leadership", for which
"we offer Europe a joint and loyal work, but without renouncing our
essence: fishing", he asserted, whilst recalling that "we have amply
demonstrated that we know how to do things in a sustainable and environmentally
friendly way and this must continue to be our flag".
Work, humility, consensus and dialogue
To achieve these challenges, and "aware of the great responsibility
that I am taking on today", he offered "work, humility, consensus and
dialogue". "We want to be a port where its workers feel proud to be
so" because "the Port of Vigo is what it is because of them". A
port in which more than 50,000 people work, both directly and indirectly, among
whom he highlighted the work of the 200 people who, from the Port Authority,
"make the day to day running of the port possible". Workers such as
the Port Police, the lighthouse keepers, the colleagues in port operations,
maintenance and infrastructures, environment and security and many others.
"Without them, the daily running of the port would not be possible".
"I promise you that I will make you proud of the Port of Vigo", he
Profile of the new president
Carlos Botana Lagarón was born in Vigo in 1972. He holds a degree in Marine
Sciences from the University of Vigo, a Master's in Environmental Management
from the University of Vigo, and a Master's in Business Administration from the
National University of Distance Education (UNED).
He has over 20 years of experience in managing the commercial, fishing, and
port environment of Vigo. He started his career in the Quality and Production
department of a fishing company and later worked on projects related to public
administration and ports at a management consulting engineering firm.
Since 2002, he has held various positions at the Port Authority of Vigo,
including head of the Fisheries Operations and Environment divisions. From 2015
to 2023, he was responsible for the Sustainability Department of the Port of
He has worked on more than twenty European projects related to the
environment and development under various programs (Life+, H2020, Interreg
Atlantic Area, Horizon, POPTEC, among others).
He is the coordinator of the Atlantic Space Ports Pillar for the European
Commission. He is a member of the Sustainability and Development Committee and
the Energy Committee of ESPO (European Sea Ports Organisation), the Climate and
Energy Committee of IAPH (International Association of Ports and Harbours), and
served as president of the Blue Ports Network from 2019 to 2022. He is an
expert in Blue Economy and has coordinated the Blue Growth strategy of the Port
of Vigo since 2016.
• The President of the Port Authority of Vigo, Carlos Botana, and the Rector of the University of Vigo, Manuel Joaquín Reigosa, have signed a collaboration agreement laying the groundwork for the joint realization of the 3rd edition of the Scientists Meet Artists program. • The agreement between both entities aims to make this initiative more appealing to the people of Vigo, increasing its impact and visibility while enhancing interaction between the port and the city. • The building of the Real Club Náutico de Vigo has become the canvas on which artist Delio Rodríguez has created a mural of urban art focusing on ocean observation. The goal is to visualize and disseminate aspects related to the marine world.
• Carlos Botana presents a series of initiatives to the Advisory Council and the Regional Ministry of the Sea, which will be previously agreed upon with the sector. • A commitment to initiate a process of reinvention and modernization to become a worldwide reference. • El Berbés users join forces to seek solutions and express their full willingness to collaborate in revitalizing fishing activity. • The Regional Ministry of the Sea approves the new plan, recognizing the importance of fishing for Galicia and Vigo.
• The project involves 11 partners from various public and private entities in Spain, France, Ireland, and Portugal, part of the transportation and bioenergy ecosystem. • The EnergyLab Technological Center, leading the project, and the Port of Vigo will conduct pilot tests to assess the feasibility of using hydrogen as fuel for port fleet vehicles and methanol for potential use in ships.