France is Jersey’s closest neighbour geographically and the regional relationships with Normandy and Brittany are at the heart of this relationship. Led by the Bureau des Iles Anglo-Normandes (BIAN), based in Caen, Normandy, our regional links have grown over the years by entering into partnership memorandums of understanding (MoU). Jersey, Guernsey, La Manche, and the region of Lower Normandy (which is now unified with Upper Normandy) signed a cooperation MoU in 2015. This MoU is designed to strengthen and sustain the links between the Channel Islands and Normandy, particularly on cultural, educational, tourism, and commercial issues. As part of this partnership, an annual summit is organised every year, hosted in turn between the four stakeholders, in order to review objectives and agree cooperation actions across a very broad spectrum of areas. Traditionally, the Prefecture of la Manche attends as an observer to cover subjects within his remit which are of State competence. The examples of concrete cooperation under this MoU include partnerships around tourism, yachting, maritime links, heritage, agriculture, marine conservation & stewardship, sea rescue, emergency planning, trade & attempts of freight links, cultural events, joint participation in high scale events, and renewable energy.
Press release of the Government of Jersey on 21 January 2015 re. Normandy Cooperation Agreement
In Brittany, Jersey enjoys close relations with the departmental council of Ille et Vilaine, having signed a partnership MoU in 2008, which was joined by Guernsey in 2017. The MoU reflects the areas of mutual interest we share such as education, youth mobility, culture, international aid, civil servant exchanges, and transport links. In 2023 we were delighted to sign an MoU with the region of Brittany for the first time which covers cooperation in the areas of iinstitutional relations, economic development, education, and environment, marine issues, and marine renewable energy. Both of these MoUs are supported by an annual political summit, hosted in turn by the signatories, to review objectives and agree actions to progress cooperation in the areas covered by the MoUs. At the national level, a Government of Jersey officer regularly spends time in the British Embassy Paris to help build relationships there and identify opportunities for cooperation in areas such as culture, education, and economy. This is supported by regular Ministerial visits.
Press release of the Government of Jersey on 20 November 2007 re. Cooperation between the Department of Ille et Vilaine.