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Suez Canal Authority expects 27% spike in annual revenues

Photo: YouTube screenshot A vessel on northbound transit along the Suez Canal (Credit YouTube).png
Egypt expects Suez Canal revenues to hit $7bn in the 2021-22 financial year, ending on June 30, up 27% from $5.5bn in the last year, Finance Minister Mohamed Maait said on Saturday.

Calendar year 2021 saw canal revenues hit a record $6.3bn, up 13% on the $5.6bn seen in 2020.

The canal is the fastest route between Europe and Asia, and despite a 10% increase in toll rates implemented in March, still saves shipping lines potentially hundreds of thousands of dollars in time and fuel, compared to sailings around the Cape of Good Hope.

Asian shipowners have been among the most vocal to complain about the toll hike, in addition to tariff increases introduced at the beginning of February.

Seatrade Maritime News calculates a 9.4% rise in fees for a southbound transit by a standard dry bulk vessel, as well as a similar increase in rebate, as of today, compared to rates in November 2020.

Screenshot 2022-05-26 at 8.10.50 AM.png

Egypt mobilised support for a widely subscribed national public debt programme to finance an $8.5bn canal expansion, finished in 2015. Completion of further works is expected next year.

With container shipping lines reporting profits of around $190bn last year, $60bn in the first quarter of 2022, Egypt can be expected to maintain the pressure on toll rates for some time to come.

Despite the fact that tourism flows to Egypt declined by 35% due to the Russian invitation of Ukraine, Maait expects tourism revenues to reach $10-12bn by the end of the financial year.

The canal, as well as tourism receipts, are important to Egypt’s GDP, which the International Monetary Fund expects to reach $435.6bn in nominal terms in 2022.

Seatrade contacted Wilhelmsen Ships Service, which provides a widely used Suez Canal online toll calculator, as well as 24/7 local support for lines transiting the canal, but it was unable to comment.

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