What is Suez Canal Blockage?

Also known as Qanat-al-Suways in Arabic, the canal serves as a route between Europe and Asia and separates the African continent from Asia. Since 1870, this canal has had 18,174 transits with a net annual tonnage of about 1,139,630,000 metric tons in 2018. The traffic has significantly changed since the 1950s due to the growth in crude oil and petroleum products from the Persian Gulf. The northbound container ship’s primary cargo items are crude petroleum and petroleum products, coal, ores and metals, and fabricated metals, wood, oilseeds, and oilseed cake and cereals. Meanwhile, the southbound cargo items consist of cement, fertilizers, fabricated metals, grains, and empty oil tankers.

What happened at the Suez Canal Blockage?

Ever Given is an enormous cargo ship. It has the capacity of carrying 200,000-ton of shipment. The moment it wedged in the Suez Canal, it was holding almost 20,000 shipping containers of cargo. On the morning of 23rd March, the crisis was amid high winds, and a sandstorm, of course, affected the sailors’ visibility. The container’s total worth was $9 billion. Ever Given blocked all the maritime trade corridor canals and made it difficult for the other ships to move forward. 

The canal provides the shortest sea connection between Asia and Europe. Suez Canal is 193km (120-mile) long and connects the Mediterranean Sea to the Red Sea, providing 12% of the global trade.

The six-day crisis came to an end on 29th March 2021 after salvage crews used the tug boats and dredgers to dislodge the big ship and bring it back to operation. 

The world’s largest container shipping company Maersk has claimed to have four of the vessels jammed in the canal system. Apart from one company, this would have caused millions of dollars to many firms worldwide only if the ship was not freed. 

What the authorities need to do is to make that just-in-time business is reliable. Still, in times of crisis, it’s the present state of limited operational state can leave long-lasting adverse effects on the global economy. It should be noted that only a week caused so much international anxiety, and the hurdle directly or indirectly affected everybody. 

To avoid such a situation in the future, steps should be carried out, such as keeping tug boats and rescue panels as an active backup plan. Globalization has crucial effects on the world, including seeing the world as one, even if it’s only a container ship. But that container ship holds the power of collapsing or balancing some part of the world economy, and that fact is enough for us as a warning. It is about time we show our deep concern for our economic operations – whether they are climate-friendly or not, is the operation costing the firms more than it should, and so on. The world as a unit must be aware of the uncalled disasters. 

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