Saturday, 19 June, 2021


Suez Canal ship's crew celebrates on video after Ever Given is freed

The Ever Given container ship is seen in Egypt's Suez Canal where it became stuck last Tuesday The Ever Given container ship is seen in Egypt's Suez Canal where it became stuck last Tuesday
Bennie Garza | 30 March, 2021, 04:25

The Ever Given mega-ship that has been wedged in the Suez Canal in Egypt has now been freed.

"The insurance industry is waiting with bated breath at the direction from which claims can arise out of this canal blockage and of course what could be the enormity of the exposure", said R Balasundaram, executive vice-president, global insurance.

While the canal is now unblocked, it is unclear when traffic would return to normal.

After further dredging and excavation over the weekend, efforts by rescue workers from the SCA and a team from Dutch firm Smit Salvage worked to free the ship using tug boats in the early hours of Monday, two marine and shipping sources said.

Hundreds of other container ships, bulk carriers and oil-laden tankers remain backed up at both ends of the canal, but news of the ship's movement immediately sent oil prices sharply lower after they had traded slightly down for the morning.

Experts are not sure how one of the world's largest cargo ships got stuck in the 985-feet-wide single lane, about 3.7 miles north of the Suez Canal's southern entrance. Depending on the outcome, the massive vessel that is loaded with 20,000 containers will either continue its journey to its final destination Rotterdam, Netherlands, or be diverted to another port for fix.

Mark Szakonyi, executive editor of the Journal of Commerce, a publication that covers shipping and logistics, said the blockage in the canal couldn't have come at a worse time. Clothing, electronic products and construction materials are among the goods that enter the port from Asia, port spokeswoman Melanie Nadeau said.

The statement warned that even when the Suez Canal is fully reopened, the "ripple effect on global supply" will be significant.

I am excited to announce that our team of experts, working in close collaboration with the Suez Canal Authority, successfully refloated the Ever Given on 29 March at 15:05 hrs local time, thereby making free passage through the Suez Canal possible again.

Millions of barrels of oil and gas move through the canal from the Persian Gulf to Europe and North America.

The shutdown had threatened to stop oil and gas shipments to Europe from the Middle East.

He praised the duration of the salvage operation on the MV Ever Given as "record-breaking", claiming it would have taken three months anywhere else in the world.

While the likely impact of this incident on India is minimal for now, had the blockage continued for days and weeks, pressure would have mounted for certain industries that depend on Europe and the U.S. for critical raw materials or parts or for those industries whose turnovers are driven by exports to these countries.

As a window for a breakthrough narrows with high tide receding this week, fears have grown that authorities would be forced to lighten the vessel by removing the ship's 20,000 containers - a complex operation requiring specialized equipment not found in Egypt that could take days or weeks.

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