Egypt’s Suez Canal Authority (SCA) will request more than $1 billion in compensation for the container ship Everest’s damages. SCA chairperson Osama Rabie claimed that it was trapped in the waterway and prevented navigation for six days.
The compensation for the losses and damages “will reach over 1 billion dollars,” Rabie told a local TV channel on Wednesday. “This is the right of the state, and we will not give it up.”
On March 23, the 224,000-ton Panama-flagged ship became trapped in the crucial Suez waterway. Six days later, it was refloated thanks to the SCA’s efforts in collaboration with the Dutch company Boskalis and its emergency response unit, SMIT Salvage, which Ever Givens’ owner employed.
The SCA Chairperson clarified that the authority’s reimbursement request covers not only financial damages incurred by the six-day navigation suspension, but also the costs of using dredgers and tugboats and physical harm caused by the salvage operation.
Egypt resumed navigation in the canal several hours after they rescued the stranded container ship early Monday. Many of the 422 ships that have been kept waiting crossed the waterway. According to Rabie, by Saturday, at most, all 422 delayed ships will have crossed the Suez Canal.
The Suez Canal, which connects the Mediterranean and Red Seas, is a vital lifeline for global seaborne trade. It allows ships to sail between Europe and South Asia without passing across Africa, reducing the sea voyage gap between Europe and India by about 7,000 kilometers. The human-made canal transports some 12% of the world’s trade volume.