Kiel Canal Traffic Dues Suspended, Waterway Now More Competitive

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Germany waves of  traffic dues for passing through Kiel Canal due to this year’s low bunker prices, says an article published in the Port of Hamburg.

Dues suspension

According to the port authority, the traffic dues will be suspended from  this month (01.07.2020) until the end of the year (31.12.2020).

Maritime economy under pressure 

Jens Broder Knudsen, Chairman of the Kiel-Canal Initiative said, “Caused by the Corona crisis, the maritime economy is under massive cost pressure and traffic on the Kiel Canal is experiencing an unprecedented decline.”

Reason for the decline

This decline is mainly due to the currently historically low bunker prices.

Benefits using Kiel canal

  • The canal allows ships to pass from the Baltic to the North Sea through Germany without travelling around Denmark.
  • The route around Denmark is longer and less environmentally friendly, but is free of traffic dues.
  • And this year’s low bunker prices removed much of the benefits from using it.

Knudsen said, “The suspension of the traffic dues is an important step to restore the competitiveness of the Kiel Canal.”

“It does justice to the importance of the Kiel Canal, which secures over 3,000 jobs in the region and around 51 million tons of cargo in the port of Hamburg alone” Knudsen emphasizes. 

Levy suspension temporary?

According to Knudsen, it would now be necessary to check whether the temporary suspension of the levies is sufficient or whether a permanent suspension would be the better solution for the economy as a whole.

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Source: Port of Hamburg

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