Vessels delayed at Suez Canal can claim compensation from P&I clubs, expert says

Mohamed Soliman , Monday 29 Mar 2021

Vessels delayed due to the incident need not seek compensation from the Suez Canal Authority or from Evergreen Company, the expert told Ahram Online

Suez Canal
Ship Ever Given, one of the world's largest container ships, is seen after it was fully floated in Suez Canal, Egypt March 29, 2021. REUTERS/

Any ships that have incurred damages from the delay caused by the blocking of the Suez Canal by the massive ship Ever Given can claim compensation from marine insurance providers called Protection and Indemnity (P&I) clubs, an expert told Ahram Online.

Navigation along the international trade artery, which is the shortest link between Asia and Europe, resumed after a massive container ship that had been stranded in the canal was refloated today.

The 400-metre-long, which was on its way from China to the port city of Rotterdam in the Netherland, veered off course and ran aground while it was passing through the international trade route on Tuesday morning.

The incident has caused around 369 vessels to be queued at the waterway or at anchor awaiting transit through the canal, through which around 12 percent of all world trade passes.

The skyscraper-sized ship will be inspected to ensure the safety of its hull after having been wedged for six days in the shore of the canal, Ashraf Belal, an expert at Norway-based quality assurance company DNV GL, told Ahram Online.

Belal said that vessels delayed due to the incident need not seek compensation from the Suez Canal Authority or from Evergreen Company, the Taiwanese company that operates the Ever Given, as they can claim compensation from P&I clubs.

Each ship is covered by two kinds of insurance: Hull and Machinery insurance, which insures against physical damage, and P&I clubs, which cover damage caused due to other vessels or fleets.

Belal added that the protection clubs would cover both the costs of refloating the Ever Given as well as the delays.

The previous schedule of the queued ships' trips would be altered as per the new priorities, the expert said, in reference to the animals that have been stuck aboard a number of stranded ships.

The Egyptian Ministry of Agriculture said it has made veterinarians available to examine up to 60,000 cattle aboard five ships stuck in the canal and provided them with fodder.

Earlier today, chairman of the Suez Canal Authority Osama Rabie said in a TV statement that operations at the canal will continue around the clock to clear the traffic jam caused by the mishap.

Shipping Giant Maersk and Partners said on Monday that it could take six days or more for ships stuck at the Suez Canal to pass through the waterway after the delay.

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