The Ever Given's owner has blamed the Suez Canal Authority for the blockage, saying it wrongly allowed the ship to enter the area during poor weather conditions

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The Ever Given's owner has blamed the Suez Canal Authority for the blockage, saying it wrongly allowed the ship to enter the area during poor weather conditions
The Ever Given in the Suez Canal.Photo by Samuel Mohsen/picture alliance via Getty Images
  • The owner of the Ever Given has said the Suez Canal Authority is to blame for the ship's grounding.
  • The vessel was wrongly instructed to enter the canal amid poor weather conditions, say lawyers.
  • The ship's owner is seeking $100,000 in initial compensation for losses linked to its detainment.

The owner of the Ever Given container ship that blocked Egypt's Suez Canal for days has blamed the Suez Canal Authority (SCA) for its grounding, amid a legal dispute over compensation, a lawyer representing the owner said on Saturday.

The vessel is owned by Japanese company Shoei Kisen Kaisha. Reuters reported that lawyers acting on its behalf said the SCA had been at fault for allowing the Ever Given to enter the canal amid poor weather conditions, according to Ahmed Abu Ali, a representative of the legal team.

The incident caused chaos between March 23 and 29, as it delayed around 400 ships and significantly disrupted global trade, as Insider reported.

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Around 12% of trade flows through the channel and the vessel blocked the ships from passing through it, costing about $400 million for every hour it did not move. Once it was finally freed by several tugboats and dredges, Egypt impounded it.

The vessel has been held in an artificial lake along the canal until its insurers and Egyptian authorities come to an agreement. Its crew members have since been given permission to go home.

A recording from the ship that was granted to the court also showed disagreements between SCA pilots and its control centre over whether the ship should pass through the canal, Reuters reported.

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Lawyers representing Shoei Kisen Kaisha said the ship should have been chaperoned by at least two tug boats, "but this didn't happen."

The Japanese company is seeking $100,000 in initial compensation for losses linked to the ship's detainment.

Officials in Egypt have demand the ship's owners pay $600 million compensation for the disruption caused by the blockage. They had initially demanded $916 million. But the insurance entity that represents Shoei Kisen Kaisha said the current claim was still overblown.

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