Megaship Blocking Suez Canal May Be Refloated Today: Owner

Share

A team from Boskalis, a Dutch firm specializing in salvaging, was working with the canal authority using tugboats and a specialized suction dredger at the port side of the cargo ship's bow.

Mr Reynolds told BBC Radio 4's Today programme that the Maersk Ohio, a US-flagged container ship that is 292m long and weighs 50,000 tonnes, was "stacked up" alongside dozens of others vessels near Port Suez.

The majority of the diverted tankers, which were originally destined for Suez canal were now headed elsewhere, according to Kpler.

She added: "There will be considerable delays in the loading schedule at Ras Laffan for the start of April due to the congestion". The impasse comes as an estimated 90% of global trade is transported by sea, according to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. Mark Ma, owner of China-based Seabay International Freight Forwarding Ltd, which has 20 to 30 containers waiting to cross the blocked canal, said that if traffic doesn't resume in a week, "it will be horrible".

But while the blockage alone represents something of a crisis for the shipping industry and global trade, Jonathan Owens, a logistics expert from the University of Salford Business School notes that the incident "could not have come at a worse time".

On Friday, the Reuters news agency reported that efforts to free the ship had failed and may now take several more weeks.

An official from the Suez Canal Authority investigates the scene where the Ever Given, a cargo ship, got wedged across the Suez Canal, blocking traffic in the vital waterway.

"It just shows you how vulnerable our supply-chain lines are", said Guy Platten, secretary general for the United Kingdom -based International Chamber of Shipping.

Analysts expect a larger upward impact on smaller tankers and oil products, like naphtha and fuel oil exports from Europe to Asia, if the canal remained shut for weeks.

Some ships now may be changing course to avoid using the Suez Canal. German firm Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement (BSM) is responsible for its day-to-day operational running.

European fashion stocks hit by China Xinjiang row
The sanctions, including travel bans and asset freezes, target senior officials in the north-west region. Companies like H&M are now finding themselves caught in the middle over the issue.

The sea passage between the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman that leads to the Indian Ocean is the most critical chokepoint for oil and gas.

"We have offered, and stand ready to assist Egypt, and will look to support any specific request we receive", said Pentagon Spokesperson Commander Jessica L McNulty.

Meanwhile, the ship remained stuck sideways on Friday.

"Shipping companies are being forced to confront the spectre of taking the far longer route around the Cape of Good Hope to get to Europe or the east coast of North America", said Lloyd's List, a shipping data and news company.

Satellite images taken after the incident have shown a congestion of ships on either end of the waterway which almost 19,000 ships passed through during 2020, at average of 51.5 per day, according to the Suez Canal Authority.

And the memes filled the internet like cargo ships piling up in the Red Sea.

Shipping expert Rose George said it was "inevitable there's going to be some knock-on cost effect" for consumers around the world, but cast doubt on the explanation that gusts of wind caused the ship's grounding.

Satellite and photos distributed by the canal authority show Ever Given's bow touching the eastern wall, while its stern appeared lodged against the western wall.

Hamburg prosecutors opened an investigation of the freighter's captain and pilot on suspicion of endangering shipping traffic but shelved it in March 2020 for lack of evidence, spokesperson Liddy Oechtering told The Associated Press on Friday.

Share