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Ever Given’s owner and insurers submit new compensation offer after Suez Canal blockage

Ever Given’s owner and insurers submit new compensation offer after Suez Canal blockage
The blockage lasted six days

The UK P&I Club and the Ever Given’s other insurers have submitted a proposal believed to satisfy the Suez Canal Authority’s (SCA) requirements following more than 15 days of negotiations.

Accordingly, the owners and their insurers have requested and confirmed to the Ismailia Economic Court of First instance in a hearing on June 20, 2021, the desire to adjourn the hearing to take the necessary time to reach a final and amicable solution that satisfies all parties.

As such, a court ruling on the case was postponed until July 4 to allow for an “amicable settlement”.

In a media statement, the UK Club stated that the negotiations on the grounding incident of the vessel were “extended, long and arduous but positive working sessions”.

UK Club and the other insurers have agreed that the details of such negotiations would remain confidential.

The Ever Given has been anchored in a like between two stretches of the Suez Canal since it was dislodged on March 29.

The grounding incident across the canal lasted for six days, blocking hundreds of ships, and disrupting global trade.

The SCA originally demanded US$916m in compensation to cover salvage efforts, reputational damage and lost revenue, before it publicly lowered the request to US$550m.

However, the vessel’s owners Shoei Kisen and its insurers have disputed the claim and the ship’s detention under an Egyptian court order.

On June 3, the UK Club responded warmly to an announcement made by the SCA during a press conference held on May 30 that it was reassessing its claim in light of the valuations of the ship and cargo which had been provided by the Ever Given’s interests.

However, it expressed its concerns over the allegations made by the SCA against the ship and the Master of Ever Given.

The UK Club noted that “it is important to clarify that whilst the master is ultimately responsible for the vessel, navigation in the Canal transit within a convoy is controlled by the Suez Canal pilots and SCA vessel traffic management services”.

Included within these controls are the speed of the transit and the availability of escort tugs.

The vessel’s owners and its P&I and hill and machinery insurers have acknowledged that the SCA is entitled to compensation for its legitimate claims arising out of this incidents and have insured the vessel for certain third party liabilities of the SCA’s claims.

Since the start of the case, the owners of the Ever Given and its insurers have been committed to “an amicable and fair resolution of this matter and remain so”.