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No lawsuits yet filed against owner of ship that blocked Suez Canal

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The owner of the enormous ship that jammed the Suez Canal for hasn’t been sued over the blockbuster blockage — at least not yet.

Shoei Kisen Kaisha, the Japanese ship-leasing firm responsible for the 40 million-pound Ever Given, told Reuters it hasn’t received any lawsuits or claims for compensation stemming from the boat’s role in gumming up global trade for nearly a week.

“We are still investigating the cause of the incident and the cost including insurance payment and potential compensation for damage,” Yumi Shinohara, a deputy manager in the company’s fleet management department, told the news agency Tuesday without elaborating further.

Crews managed to free the Ever Given — a vessel roughly as long as 400 football fields — on Monday, some six days after nasty winds turned it sideways and caused it to run aground in the vital waterway between Europe and Asia.

Owner of the tanker Ever Given, Shoei Kisen President Yukito Higaki (C) and executives attend a press conference on Friday in Imabari, Ehime, Japan
Owner of the tanker Ever Given, Shoei Kisen President Yukito Higaki (C) and executives attend a press conference on Friday in Imabari, Ehime, Japan.
The Asahi Shimbun via Getty Imag

The blockage had a far-reaching economic impact by holding up an estimated $9.6 billion worth of trade each day and bringing hundreds of ships to a halt. Shipments of animals, consumer goods and even sex toys were reportedly caught up in the ordeal.

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While Shoei Kisen hasn’t been slapped with any direct claims for the mess, it’s reportedly expected to get expensive for the boat’s insurers as well as the reinsurance companies that will absorb some of the financial blow.

Fitch Ratings estimates that reinsurers will easily rack up hundreds of millions of euros in losses as a result of the blockage, though the price tag will ultimately “depend on how long it takes the salvage company to free Ever Given completely and when normal ship traffic can resume,” the credit agency said.

Naval dredger ''Mashhour'' on Friday took part in the refloating operation carried out to free the ''Ever Given'', a container ship operated by the Evergreen Marine Corporation.
Naval dredger ”Mashhour” on Friday took part in the refloating operation carried out to free the ”Ever Given”, a container ship operated by the Evergreen Marine Corporation.
ZUMAPRESS.com

Ships have started moving through the canal now that the Ever Given has been freed, but Shoei Kisen said Monday that it would check the Panamanian boat’s condition before returning it to its route.

With Post wires

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