Egypt demands $900 million for Suez Canal blockage

NHK -- Apr 15
Egyptian authorities are demanding the Japanese owner of the cargo ship that blocked the Suez Canal for almost a week last month to pay about 900 million dollars in compensation.

The 400-meter container ship Ever Given got stuck in the key waterway and prevented the passage of all other vessels. It is being held in a nearby lake while authorities investigate.

The ship's owner, Shoei Kisen Kaisha, based in the western Japanese prefecture of Ehime, said on Wednesday that the Suez Canal Authority is demanding about 900 million dollars. The amount is said to include costs to refloat the vessel and shipping fee losses incurred by the canal's blockage.

Shoei Kisen is covered by a major Japanese insurance company and the UK P&I Club for protection and indemnity. The SCA reportedly said the Ever Given will be held until compensation is paid.

Shoei Kisen said that the compensation claim is of an unprecedented scale and that the SCA has provided no clear basis for the claim. Company officials said the company will continue negotiating with the SCA, and hope to get the ship's cargo delivered as soon as possible. - NHK