Ever Given owners put new compensation offer on the table
The owners of the Ever Given containership, which has been detained in Egypt since April, have submitted a new compensation proposal to the Suez Canal Authority (SCA) to settle damages caused by the ship’s infamous March grounding.
The 20,000 TEU, Panama-flagged, boxship is owned by Japanese company Shoei Kisen Kaisha and was chartered by Taiwanese Evergreen Marine Corporation.
The offer is being made after a new round of two-week-long talks between the two sides.
“Over the course of more than 15 days, in extended, long and arduous, but positive working sessions, the UK Club together with the ship’s other insurers have been engaged in negotiations with the committee assigned by the Suez Canal Authority on the grounding incident of Ever Given,” the UK P&I Club said.
“We agreed that the details of such negotiations would remain confidential.”
The owners and their insurers requested and confirmed to the Ismailia Economic Court of First Instance in a hearing, held on Sunday, June 20, 2021, that they wanted to adjourn the hearing in order to take the necessary time to reach a “final and amicable solution that satisfies all parties.”
Initially, the Suez Canal Authority sought a compensation worth $916 million, which the owners turned down as too high. Subsequently, the claim was reduced to $550 million, provided that $200 million is paid in advance, while the remaining $350 million is paid as letters of guarantee issued by an “A class” bank in Egypt.
The UK Club welcomed SCA’s reassessment of the claim in light of the valuations of the ship and cargo, adding it was looking forward to reaching a resolution as soon as is practicable.
Meanwhile, there has been a brewing tug of war between the two sides over the responsibility for the ship’s grounding. SCA said the captain of the vessel was to blame for the incident, stressing that the role of the pilots onboard during the ship’s transit was only advisory and that the weather conditions could not be blamed for the grounding.
Ever Given, which was arrested on April 13, 2021, remains anchored in the Great Bitter Lakes, awaiting for the legal dispute between the duo to be resolved.