Evergreen mulls moving cargo from seized Ever Given from Suez Canal
TAIWAN’s Evergreen Marine Corp is considering removing containers from its 20,124-TEU Ever Given after an Egyptian court seized the ship pending compensation for blocking the canal for a week, reports the Wall Street Journal.
“Customers are asking when their boxes will be delivered after the ship seizure, and the prospect of moving the containers to other ships and delivering them to the clients in Europe is now on the table,” said a person directly involved.”It won’t be easy to do, but there are a number of options,” the source said. “Empty ships can be deployed to pick up boxes and some can be loaded to other containerships crossing on the same route to Europe.”
The Ever Given ran aground in the Suez Canal on March 23 while hauling 18,000 laden TEU from Asia to Europe. Salvage teams freed the ship six days later, but it remains in a holding area in the canal while the Suez Canal Authority pursues a claim of US$916 million against the ship’s owner, Japan-based Shoei Kisen Kaisha.
Taiwan’s Evergreen was operating the vessel on a long-term charter from ship owner Shoei Kisen when the Ever Given ran aground.
Shifting the cargo to another ship would be a physical challenge and may require moving the vessel from its anchorage in the canal’s Great Bitter Lake to Egypt’s nearby Port Said. Any effort to remove the shipments would be complicated by the legal claims and fees surrounding the vessel and its cargo customers.
Shoei Kisen has invoked the shipping legal clause known as general average that calls for companies with cargo on a distressed vessel to share in the cost of the ship’s recovery.