Corinth Canal To Open Again To Shipping In July
The Corinth Canal in Greece had been closed to traffic from 2021, around February 2021, following landslides that had made it impossible to navigate. However, it is going to reopen for vessels in July, the sovereign wealth fund of the country, named HCAP, informed on Wednesday.
The Hellenic Corporation of Assets and Participations reported that enhancements instituted in July by some of the senior managers of Corinth Canal SA will include a new intuitive portal and advanced e-commerce services, more personalized services, online notifications (arrivals/transits), and online ticketing.
A new tugboat named “Vergina” will expand the existing fleet’s services to towing and assist with safe handling of merchant vessels docking at the ports of Corinth, Kalamaki, Kiato, Thisvi, and Sousaki, all in the Corinth Canal region. Fencing along the canal and the construction of a paved footpath stretch for about 3.5km. It will be initiated by 2022 with support from Peloponnese Region.
Per data shared by HCAP (2019), 11,417 vessels passed the Corinth Canal, a rise of 7.5% with 55% of transits specific to tourism. The fact highlights the potential as well as the importance of the project for the wider region after repair works.
The channel is used by all types of vessels, from small tourist crafts to huge merchant vessels, tankers, and cruise ships. Especially for cruise ships, passing by the Canal is a great travel experience. Besides, the passage also serves as the safest and shortest sea route for vessels coming from Adriatic, Ionian, and Southern Italian ports, and for vessels passing via the Strait of Messina and heading toward ports in the Eastern Mediterranean and the Black Sea (and vice versa).
Travelling to Piraeus from Patras via the Canal takes a vessel 100 nm, but with the Canal shut, a vessel is obliged to sail around the Peloponnese and cover 295 nm.