- The Ever Given has passed a technical inspection allowing it to proceed up the Suez Canal.
- However, it still can’t move from its current position because Egypt has impounded it.
- Officials are seeking a reported $900 million in damages for the ship’s 6-day grounding.
- See more stories on Insider’s business page.
The Ever Given has been given a technical all-clear to sail up the Suez Canal, but cannot proceed because Egypt has seized the ship while it demands a huge payout.
The ship’s technical manager Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement (BSM) said in a statement Wednesday that following “thorough inspections” by the American Bureau of Shipping, the Ever Given “has been declared suitable for onward passage” to Port Said, the port city at the canal’s northern end.
From there, the ship “will be assessed again before departing for Rotterdam,” BSM said. Rotterdam, in the Netherlands, is home to Europe’s biggest port and is the Ever Given’s original destination.
However, for now the ship is due to stay anchored in the Suez Canal’s Great Bitter Lake for the foreseeable future, because it was impounded by the Egyptian government on Tuesday.
Egypt’s Suez Canal Authority (SCA) is seeking up to a reported $900 million in damages for the chaos caused by the ship’s grounding.
Between March 23 and 29, traffic was completely blocked after the Ever Given’s bow and stern became lodged in the banks of the canal, holding up around 400 ships.
Following a huge, six-day effort the ship was freed and moved to the Great Bitter Lake – a large artificial body of water that divides the northern and southern ends of the canal – where it remained as of Wednesday.
The SCA denied any responsibility for the accident, with its chief Lt. Gen. Ossama Rabie telling state-run TV Tuesday that “of course,” the ship’s owners were at fault, The Guardian reported.
The SCA’s investigation into the accident is due to conclude Thursday, the paper reported.
In early April, the ship’s owners Shoei Kisen Kaisha filed a “general average” claim, which would share any costs between the ship’s insurers and the owners of its cargo.
BSM’s CEO Ian Beveridge said that the impounding decision was “extremely disappointing.”
“From the outset, BSM and the crew on board have cooperated fully with all authorities,” he said.
The SCA has had the Ever Given’s data recorder – the equivalent of an airplane black box – since at least March 29, Lloyd’s List reported.
The ship’s 25-strong crew of Indian nationals are all in good health on board, BSM’s statement added, praising their professionalism.
Abdulgani Serang, the head of the National Union of Seafarers in India, told Insider Tuesday that the crew members are being treated well and continue to be paid.
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.