The Suez Canal blockage cause a big disarray in trade

The Suez Canal blockage cause a big disarray in trade

The Suez Canal expects 140 ships to pass on Mar 30 after the freeing of a container ship stranded for nearly a week allowed it to reopen.

But experts warned that disruptions to global shipping and at ports could take months to resolve.

The blockage threw global supply chains into disarray, threatening costly delays for firms already wrestling with COVID-19 restrictions.

And nearly doubled rates for oil product tankers.

Shipping convoys through the canal resumed on Monday evening.

After tugs pulled the 400-metre-long Ever Given container carrier free from the spot where it became wedged amid high winds on Mar 23.

«We want to reaffirm in a clear message to the world that everything is back to the way it was,» Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi told reporters on Tuesday from a platform on the canal, as container ships passed behind him.

The Ever Given’s grounding across a southern section of the canal forced a halt to all traffic.

Leading to a build-up of 422 ships at either end of the canal and along its course.

Suez Canal Authority chairman Osama Rabie said 95 ships would pass by 1900 local time on Tuesday and a further 45 by midnight, reasserting that he hoped the build-up would be cleared in three to four days.

«We’ll work day and night and God willing we’ll get it done in the shortest time possible,» Rabie said.

Knock-on effects to global shipping and at ports could take much longer to disentangle.

Though the build-up around the Suez Canal might be cleared in four to five days, it could take several months to deal with backlogs at ports. Jan Hoffmann, an UNCTAD expert on logistics, told a briefing.

Shipping group Maersk has also said disruptions to international shipping could last for months.

Source: Channel News Asia

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