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Egypt seized an enormous container ship that closed off the Suez Canal last month because it sought compensation of over $900 million for the blockage.
A court within the city of Ismailia granted the request regarding the Ever Given vessel at the behest of the Suez Canal Authority, state-run Ahram Gate reported on its website. It didn’t say who the SCA wants compensation from.
The ship’s insurer for third-party losses, the U.K. P&I Club, said during a statement that it received a claim for $916 million, the dimensions of which is “largely unsupported.” It said it had been disappointed that the vessel was arrested on Tuesday.
Egypt’s move underscores the legal complications following the container vessel’s grounding on March 23, which closed the canal for nearly every week and roiled shipping markets. Logjams are expected to continue within the coming weeks at major ports like Singapore and Rotterdam due to disruptions to schedules, consistent with supply-chain data provider project44.
The SCA has said compensation is required to hide losses of transit fees, damage to the waterway during the dredging and salvage efforts, and therefore the cost of kit and labor. it’s calculated that it omitted on about $15 million of transit fees every day .
The U.K. P&I Club said the claim included a $300 million salvage bonus and another $300 million for loss of reputation, but not the professional salvor’s claim for its services. It said a generous offer was made to settle the claim which negotiations will continue.
Calls to the SCA weren’t answered.
A spokesman for the Ever Given’s owner, Japan-based Shoei Kisen Kaisha Ltd., declined to discuss compensation while discussions with the SCA are underway. the corporate said the crew remains on board the ship, which is now within the Great Bitter Lake, about halfway along the canal.
The charterer, Taiwan’s Evergreen Marine Corp., said in an email it hadn’t received any information from the ship’s owner a few writ .