Three Ships Take Test Run Through The New Suez Canal Just Before Its Formal Inauguration

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Suez Canal

Anticipating the formal inauguration of the New Suez Canal which will take place on the 6th of August 2105, authorities test ran three ships in the new expanded canal.

  • The first ship that passed by was, an American flagged ship heading towards Port Said from Saudi Arabia,
  • The second was a Danish ship heading from Singapore toward the United States and
  • The third was a Bahraini ship going from Saudi Arabia toward Italy.

The three ships that took the initiatory passage via the New Canal ran with tight security by escort ships and helicopters.  The SCA, minding the areas of Suez Canal that borders the Sinai Peninsula, known for insurgency and ruthless killings of soldiers and police since 2013.

The Egyptian army has completed the New Suez Project in a record period of less than a year.  The new canal that runs alongside the existing 145-year-old Suez Canal was is $8 billion project.  This will result in increasing the daily two-way transit to 97 from the present 49 ships.  Permissible draft will increase to 66 feet all through Suez Canal.  Overall additional length of the canal will be 72 km.  Savings from the New canal on a two-way transit will be up to 11 hours and the waiting time will be as less as 3 hours.  New Suez Canal can triple the revenues to $15 billion by 2023.

The 2011 uprising in Egypt resulted in a sharp dip in tourism and unemployment.  President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi sees this not only as a National pride of Egypt but is a move to curb Egypt’s double-digit unemployment and to revitalize the tourism industry.

Chairman of the Suez Canal Authority, Mohab Mameesh, who is the overseer of the project, was confident of several other test runs via the new canals, given the success of the maiden test run.  He has mentioned about the proposed construction of yet another canal near the east Port Said port on the Mediterranean sea, parallel to the existing one, to allow ships to pass north and south concurrently and to help cope with the expected growth of world trade.

News sources from within the SCA commented that the new project would cost $60 million.  It will be 9.5 kilometers (6 miles) long, 18.5 meters deep, and 250 meters wide.  The two canals will have four small waterways that connect and ships will continue to use the canal in longer convoys.  It is likely to take around 7 months to complete.  In addition, the Egyptian government intends to build a logistics hub surrounding the canal areas to boost its economy.

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