March 24, 2023
The huge structure inaugurated in 1869 saw the transit of 1.41 billion tons of various cargoes. Tarek WAJEH / AFP

With the “highest” turnover in its history, this crucial route for global maritime trade is up 25% compared to 2021.

The Suez Canal brought the Egyptian state about 7.5 billion euros in 2022, continuing to break records with the turnover “the highestof the history of this crucial way for the world maritime trade located in the east of Egypt. This represents an increase of 25% compared to 2021, explains the Authority of the channel in a press release.

The immense work inaugurated in 1869 saw the transit of 1.41 billion tons of various cargoes, a figure also the “highest in canal history“, while 24,820 ships have used it, an average of 68 ships per day – against 56 in 2021, further notes the public establishment. This increase in traffic was made possible by a development, the first of the “mega-projectsof President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi who have absorbed a good part of Egyptian finances in recent years. A new section dug in 2014 and 2015 now facilitates the crossing of convoys and reduces the transit time of ships.

In addition, Egypt increases taxes and other crossing fees imposed on ships every year, one of the country’s main sources of foreign exchange, one of the five most at risk of not repaying its foreign debt according to the Moody’s agency. With inflation at 22% officially – but in reality 101% according to hyperinflation experts – Egypt is launched in the hunt for the dollar: the IMF lends it three billion over four years, far from the 42 qu ‘it must repay for its debt in 2022-2023. “Canal revenues increased from 4 to 7.5 billion euros thanks to expansion works», Congratulated Abdel Fattah al-Sissi recently.

In early January, a ship carrying Ukrainian corn ran aground in the channel, which connects the Red and Mediterranean Seas, before being quickly refloated without disrupting traffic. In 2021, the Ever Given, a giant container ship of almost 200,000 tons, blocked the traffic route between Europe and Asia for several days. The rescue operation lasted six days and cost the life of an agent of the Suez Canal Authority. Egypt had lost between 12 and 15 million dollars per day of closure while insurers had estimated billions of dollars in losses per day for global maritime trade.

HAVEALSO – After blocking it, the Ever Given successfully crosses the Suez Canal

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