One Vessel In Panama Canal Paid A Whopping $2.4 Million To Skip The Queue

Shippers must pay substantial amounts if their carriers want to beat a logjam of vessels waiting to cross the drought-impacted Panama Canal.

One recently had to pay $2.4 million — besides a transit fee of approximately $400,000 — to get a slot permit for its carrier to traverse the channel faster, shipping firm Avance Gas Holding Ltd. mentioned in its weekly earnings.

Panama Canal
Representation Image

A queue of vessels has been rising in recent months as drought indicates less water to fill the canal locks. This resulted in fewer ships transiting and being loaded with less cargo — all of this has added to the backlog at a waterway that handles over half a billion tons of cargo yearly.

Panama Canal Authority holds auctions for those who desire to queue jump.

One can easily skip the queue, but it is immensely costly, mentioned Oystein Kalleklev, Avance Gas’s CEO. It has gone up rapidly. When adding the regular fee, one gets closer to $3 million to get the vessels through.

The fee is notably a record high and was to permit the sail of a liquefied petroleum gas bulk carrier, per data on slot auctions observed by Bloomberg. Panama Canal Authority did not comment immediately.

References: Economic Times, Gulf News, Ajot

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