2022年1月20日

Traffic in the Suez Canal suspended after heavy cargo ships ran aground

China News Service Beijing on March 26 Egypt’s Suez Canal Authority Chairman Osama Rabiyeh said in a statement Thursday that the ship ran aground, and the rescue operation will continue, but it is not clear how long it will take.

Egypt’s official news agency reported Wednesday that 13 cargo ships entered the Suez Canal via Egypt’s Port Said in an effort to keep moving after they had been stranded. Dozens of other ships carrying vital cargo are stranded at either end of the canal. So far, nine tugboats and two dredgers are involved in the rescue effort. Traffic in the Suez Canal has been suspended until the rescue of the stranded cargo ship is completed. It is understood that the Suez Canal Authority had announced the reopening of the old canal a day earlier in an attempt to ease the congestion of cargo vessels at both ends of the canal.

    图为在苏伊士运河新航道搁浅的货船。
    图为在苏伊士运河新航道搁浅的货船。

In an interview with local media, Rabeeh also said that once the rescue is successful, the Suez Canal will be open 24/7 to make up for the waiting time of stranded cargo ships. But it is not clear when the ship was rescued.

Peter Berdowski, chief executive of Boskalis, a Dutch company involved in the rescue of the ship, told Dutch television that the rescue would take weeks and would depend on the size of the ship, Al Jazeera reported.

The report also noted that about 30 percent of the world’s shipping containers pass through the Suez Canal every day, accounting for about 12 percent of the world’s total trade in goods. If existing container ships remain blocked, the impact on global trade could be huge. The report quoted James Moran, a former EU ambassador to Egypt, as saying that “between $8 billion and $10 billion of trade passes through the Suez Canal every day — it is absolutely vital for the European supply chain” and that the Suez Canal “crisis” could be “costly”.

    图为在苏伊士运河新航道搁浅的货船的船头被卡在岸边。
    图为在苏伊士运河新航道搁浅的货船的船头被卡在岸边。

Egypt’s Suez Canal Authority said in a statement Thursday that a heavy cargo ship flying the Panamanian flag ran aground in the new waterway of the Suez Canal on Wednesday, causing traffic congestion. The ship, about 400 meters long and 59 meters wide, was heading for the Dutch port of Rotterdam when it ran aground.

Located at the crossroads of Europe, Asia and Africa, the Suez Canal connects the Red Sea and the Mediterranean Sea. Revenue from the canal is one of Egypt’s main sources of state revenue and foreign exchange reserves. (after)

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