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Suez Canal Not Releasing Ever Given Ship & Crew Until Compensation is Paid

While the Suez Canal Blockage is resolved, the ordeal of its grounded ship Ever Given is far from over. According to reports, the ship is stuck in the region until and unless the compensation is paid to the canal authorities.

Egypt has asked for heavy compensation for the 6-day blockage which includes the cost of refloating the ship and the revenue loss that happened during the blockage.

The authorities have made it clear that they won’t release the ship or its crew until the shipowner pays the compensation and the investigation gets over.

“The vessel will remain here until investigations are complete and compensation is paid,” said Osama Rabie, chairman of the Suez Canal Authority.

Evergreen Lines Ever Given Grounded In Suez Canal -
Image Credits: suezcanal.gov.eg

“We hope for a speedy agreement. The minute they agree to compensation, the vessel will be allowed to move”, Rabie added.

Earlier last week, Rabie indicated that Egypt could be demanding compensation worth $1 billion for the loss of transit fees and other costs. According to an analysis by London based financial firm Revenitiv, Egypt lost transit fees worth $95 million because of the blockage. However, Canal officials have affirmed that some of it would be recouped once the regular traffic resumes in the Suez Canal.

Although they aren’t ruling a lawsuit altogether,  they prefer an out of court settlement. Meanwhile, the Japanese owner of the vessel, Shoei Kisen Kaisha Ltd., says that they haven’t received any information regarding this clause that the ship won’t be released without compensation, said the company spokesman Ryu Murakoshi.

“It is true we are in the middle of negotiations with them,” Rabie said.

He declined to reveal the compensation amount, saying that the company is cooperating with an investigation done by the Canal authorities.

The ship ran aground in the canal on 23rd March and got relocated on 30th March after round the clock efforts by engineers and sailors working with a flotilla of tugs to refloat it. A supermoon high spring tide helped in the process.

Presently, Ever Given along with its 25 crew members are at the Great Bitter Lake, just outside the canal where the cause of the grounding is being investigated.

The ship’s black box has been accessed by the investigators to find more clues about the grounding. Initially, the investigators had suggested that the sandstorm and windy issues set the vessel put of course.

Meanwhile, the Japanese company that owns the ship have moved to court, filing a case at a London High Court to limit liability. This claim names the ship’s charterer Evergreen Marine Corp as the defendant along with all others who could be claiming damages for the blockage, including the Suez Canal.

A spokesperson from the company, Mr Murakoshi termed it as “part of the normal process of an insurance claim”, making it clear that it wasn’t an attempt to target Evergreen or anyone else.

The company has declared that ” shippers with cargo on the ship would have to pay into a fund to cover costs of recovery or damages before they could reclaim their cargo”.

They have hired adjuster Richard Hogg Lindley to handle the matter.

Meanwhile, seafarers association and unions are concerned about the fate of the ship’s seafarers in case of a long dispute.

They fear that the sailors could be trapped for long.

“The prospect of them being stuck gives us grave concern,” said Stephen Cotton, the secretary-general of the International Transport Workers Federation in London.

The crew seemed to be well treated, said Mr Cotton.

Reference: livemint.com

18 Comments

  1. Ever Given cannot transit the Suez Canal without a Pilot, Pilots are being hired because they know and very familiar with the locality, when accident/incident happen during the transit the Master still liable, in my opinion this century old ruling must be scrapped and held the pilot liable for the consequences.

  2. Did they really have a loss of transit fee’s? Seems more delayed than a loss, there wasn’t very many ships that went a different route…

  3. The Ever Given is no more responsible for running aground than Egypt is for the weather that caused it. All they are doing now is holding people and their property hostage for a ransom.

  4. Being held for ransom!along with the owners of the cargo in containers. This could turn into a big mess if all the shipping brokers are sued for delayed or lost cargo.Corrupt Egyptian gov’t will demand payments.

  5. Crew will be made scapegoat as always – laws like MLC, ILO, ITF, IMO, UN etc found 2 b a big farce in pandemic, c the plight globally how many seafarers stuck for months long overdue relief & nothing in sight

  6. According to my understanding when the ship arrived at the suez canal zone the captain surrender the ship to suez canal captain till the end of the canal which translate that if anything happen it will be under suez canal authority. Why now their complaining compensation from the ship owners

  7. You’re saying that the crew is not allowed to disembark?

    Suppose food runs out? Also this ship is holding cargo companies are waiting for, more issues! Ever Given in a troll of a mess!!!

  8. It’s called the Evergreen Ship not ever given. Mistyped articles should not be released.

  9. The pilots organization should be held accountable not the shipping company if there was no mechanical failure. The Master or other ships officers were not at the helm.

  10. If there is liability or not there is always insurance covered by reinsurance (little Munich Re has got some income every year of about two – four billion Euro).
    For some 180 years all cases on see and water ways with damages have had a fast solution.

  11. Why do you say Ever Given ? The side of the ship planly says Evergreen.

  12. So the cargo on the ship is being held hostage while blame and ransom is being negotiated. From what I have read it seems like navigating a ship this size thru the canal is not easy under perfect conditions and the conditions were far from perfect. Also what about the canal “pilots” involved. Seems like some “adult” leadership is needed.

  13. This proves the face of money in Egyt. I hope, the fault wasn’t from the pilot’s.

  14. The insurance clauses come handy here as the maritime law principles uphold the right of claim of adversely affected parties. The maritime insurance is activated to mitigate the effect on the Japanese owners of the Suez Canal

  15. It is not clear why Egypt is thinking of detaining the crew members or the ship.Detaining the crew members would be an inhumane treatment for them.Even the ship with its cargo also should not be detained as why the other stakeholders should suffer.The ship owners can’t refuse to pay later the negotiated compensation to the Suez Canal authority as they would be needing the transit facility for their ships in future also through the Suez Canal.

  16. That’s holding for ransom. It is illegal what SCA is doing. Whatever happens to insurance procedures?

  17. What revenue lost?
    Don’t all the 400 odd ships waiting to transit the Suez Canal pay when they eventually made their transit when Ever Given was freed? SCA is showing their indifference to the world shipping practice. Don’t forget SCA is also partly responsible for the grounding of the ship.

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