- The extensive backlog caused after the Ever Given shipping container got stuck in the Suez Canal is set to finally come to an end.
- SCA officials said the last ships that were stranded after the massive vessel would pass through today.
- Osama Rabie, the chairman of the SCA, said 85 ships that were delayed due to the crisis were set to pass through the canal on both sides.
The backlog of ships stranded by the grounding of the Ever Given has been cleared, with 422 vessels passing through the Suez Canal since the tanker was freed earlier last week after blocking the waterway, reports the Straits Times.
The final 85 ships passed through the canal on Saturday (April 3), the Suez Canal Authority said on its Facebook page, calling the operation a new achievement in the authority’s ability to manage emergencies.
Global trade crisis
Global trade was sent into crisis when the Ever Given ran aground and stopped dozens of ships from using the major trade route.
It forced vessels moving between Asia and Europe to take a detour around the Cape of Good Hope along South Africa’s coastline.
The longer route, which adds 3,100 miles to the journey, takes at least 10 more days to complete compared to the quicker travel through the canal. It also costs ship firms hundreds of thousands of dollars in fuel and other costs.
Thankfully for the stranded shipping containers, the Ever Given was finally freed following an almost week-long dredging and tugging operation.
The freeing of the vessel came after dredgers vacuumed up sand and mud from the Ever Given’s bow and 10 tugboats worked for five days to dislodge it.
End of backlog
Peter Berdowski, CEO of Boskalis, the salvage firm hired to extract the Ever Given said in a statement late last month: “We pulled it off.”
“I am excited to announce that our team of experts, working in close collaboration with the Suez Canal Authority, successfully refloated the Ever Given…thereby making free passage through the Suez Canal possible again.”
The end of the backlog comes after SCA stopped the Ever Given from leaving the canal until an inquiry into how the ship became stuck for nearly a week is concluded.
- Egypt’s Sada ElBalad news reported the SCA is likely to seek around $1 billion in damages caused by the major trading route’s blockage.
- The obstruction triggered a massive jam in the passage, which caused an estimated £9 billion in global trade to be delayed each day as a result of the canal being blocked.
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Source: The Straits Times