Suez Canal Ship Traffic ‘Normal,’ Without Delays, Official Says

Monday, 31 Jan 2011 06:53 AM

 

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Ships are passing normally and without delay through the Suez Canal, even as protests in Egypt continued for a seventh day, the head of traffic for the waterway’s operator said today.

The canal is handling 45 to 50 vessels a day, a volume that Ahmed El Manakhly of the Suez Canal Authority described as “normal.”

El Manakhly denied an Al-Arabiya report that some canal workers had been asked to go home. He said employees of the authority have been leaving work early to comply with an official curfew from 3 p.m. to 8 a.m., local time.

More than 4 million barrels a day of crude oil, or 4.5 percent of global output, are shipped through the canal or the Sumed pipeline that runs adjacent to it, according to New York- based McQuilling Services LLC. The world’s longest man-made waterway, at 120 miles, the canal is the fastest passage from the Atlantic Ocean to the Indian Ocean.

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