Egypt expects to sign Ever Given settlement next week – official

Egypt expects to sign a compensation agreement next week over the giant ship Ever Given, which blocked the Suez Canal for almost a week in March and disrupted global shipping, the canal’s chairman announced late Wednesday.

The Suez Canal Authority (SCA) will sign the deal with the owners and insurers of the Ever Given vessel around the middle of next week, Chairman Osama Rabie told local television.

Asked if the compensation settlement amount was near the latest figures discussed, Rabie said: “Yes, it’s near, thank God.”

He declined to disclose additional details. Egypt had initially sought over $900 million — a figure that was subsequently cut to $550 million. The compensation claim covered the cost of tugboats, dredgers, and labour hired to salvage the ship as well as the loss of revenue while the canal was blocked.

Japan’s Shoei Kisen Kaisha Ltd., the owner, and the ship’s insurers both initially offered $150 million.

Earlier on Wednesday, one of the insurers UK P & I Club announced reaching a settlement with Egyptian authorities, but without giving any details about the amount of the compensation. It said in a statement that once the settlement was formalised, the container ship — after around three months the two sides being at loggerheads — would finally complete its journey through the Egyptian canal.

Taiwan’s Evergreen Line had chartered the vessel, which was heading from China to Rotterdam. After being freed on March 29, the Ever Given was sailed to the Great Bitter Lake – about halfway along the Suez Canal – and has since been kept there by Egyptian authorities.

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