Suez Canal - New Lane and Charts

11 August 2015

Members should note that the new lane of the Suez Canal opened earlier this month, with the Suez Canal Authority (SCA) issuing Circular No. 5/2015 (click here to access a copy) setting out information including the following:-

  1. Details of the traffic system and times of the Southbound and Northbound convoys; 
  2. The amended Suez Canal Rules of Navigation August Edition 2015 that have been issued – click here to access a copy;
  3. Availability of electronic charts and other publications (including paper charts) from Edward Company for Maritime Services - click here to access their website.

The correspondent in Port Said, Abou Ali Law Firm, has reported receiving a number of queries as to whether vessels transiting the Suez Canal without updated paper charts risk being fined by the Authorities. The correspondent has clarified that whilst the Arabic text of the Circular refers to paper charts, the reference to paper charts appears to have been omitted from the English text. Although no fines have - as yet - been imposed by the SCA on vessels without the updated paper charts, it is understood that the position is likely to change soon. Therefore Members arriving at Port Said/Suez intending to transit the Suez Canal are advised to ensure they have the updated paper charts on board the vessel, so as to avoid a potential fine from the SCA.