Egyptian authorities have seized a massive cargo ship which blocked the Suez Canal for almost a week last month, amid a dispute over financial damages, the state-run Al Ahram news outlet said on Tuesday.
An Egyptian court ordered the vessel’s Japanese owner, Shoei Kisen Kaisha, to pay $900 million in compensation as a result of losses inflicted when the Panamanian-flagged Ever Given prevented marine traffic from transiting through the vital global trade waterway.
The hefty bill also includes maintenance fees and the costs of the rescue operation, Al Ahram reported.
An international salvage operation worked around the clock to dislodge the ship from the banks of the canal, intensifying in both urgency and global attention with each passing day, as ships from around the world, carrying vital fuel and cargo, were prevented from entering the canal.
The Ever Given was successfully re-floated on March 29 and moved to the nearby Great Bitter Lake to be inspected for seaworthiness and to allow repairs to be carried out.
Shoei Kisen Kaisha said insurance companies and lawyers were working on the compensation claim, and refused to comment further.