Photo: Ever Given; Image credit: SCA

Suez Canal annual revenue hits record $5.84bln despite Ever Given blockage crisis

Egypt’s Suez Canal revenue increased to $5.84 billion in its 2020-21 fiscal year (July-June), the Suez Canal Authority (SCA) announced.

“The revenues of the Suez Canal, during the fiscal year 2020/2021 recorded the highest annual revenue in the history of the canal amounting to $5.84, compared to $5.72 billion during the 2019/2020 fiscal year,” the head of the authority, Lieutenant-General Osama Rabie, revealed.

What is more, the canal’s revenue in the first six months of this year increased to about $3 billion compared with $2.76 billion in the same period last year, as revealed by the port authority.

Specifically, some 9,763 ships had passed through the waterway in the first six months of the year, two percent more than the same period last year while about 19,000 ships passed in 2020, an average of over 50 a day, the SCA stated.

“The flexible marketing and pricing policies pursued by the authority succeeded in maintaining the rates of ships crossing the canal,” Rabie also noted.

“The granted reductions played a prominent role in achieving a major boom in the increase in transit rates of LNG ships, containerships, car carriers and dry bulk ships during the period from January to June 2021.”

“LNG carriers increased by 24%, and containerships increased by 9.7%. Car carriers increased … by 27.8%, and dry bulk vessels increased by 5% during that period.”

The increase comes despite the various challenges including the COVID-19 pandemic and the grounding incident of containership Ever Given.

The 20,000 TEU containership Ever Given, which run aground in March 2021, steamed away several days ago, after its Japanese owners reached a compensation deal with the canal authority.

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Even though the details on the amount of compensation the two parties agreed upon were not disclosed, the SCA sought compensation worth $916 million, which the owners turned down as too high.

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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.