Eighty-seven vessels with a net tonnage of 5.6 million tonnes are set to cross Egypt’s Suez Canal in both directions on Thursday, the Suez Canal Authority (SCA) announced, as it pushes forward with efforts to clear a backlog caused by a six-day blockage of the canal by the giant container ship Ever Given.
SCA chairman Osama Rabie said that some 194 vessels with a net tonnage of 12 million have crossed the canal since it reopened on Monday evening and until Wednesday.
The 400-metre-long Ever Given, which was on its way from China to the port city of Rotterdam in the Netherland, veered off course and ran aground diagonally while it was passing through the international trade route on 23 March.
The gigantic ship, which was wedged sideways across the waterway for six days, caused around 422 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.
Egypt said it will seek over $1 billion in compensation for the losses incurred from the blocking of the Suez Canal as well as the costs of refloating the vessel.
The SCA will also ask to be reimbursed for the expenses of using dredgers and tugboats in the refloating process, according to TV statements by Rabie.