Cairo (AP) Egypt’s Suez Canal said Sunday its annual revenues reached USD6.3 billion last year, the highest in the crucial waterway’s history.

Admiral Ossama Rabei, head of the Suez Canal Authority, said last year’s revenues rose 12.8per cent, compared to 2020, when the canal achieved USD5.6 billion.

He said in a statement that 20,649 vessels flowed through the Suez Canal last year, an increase of 10per cent compared to 18,830 vessels in 2020.

About 10per cent of global trade, including 7per cent of the world’s oil, flows through the Suez Canal, which connects the Mediterranean and Red seas. The canal, first opened in 1869, is source of national pride and foreign currency to Egypt.

The unprecedented 2021 revenues came as the shipping industry is still under pressure from two years of the coronavirus pandemic.

The canal, one of the world’s most vital waterways, was blocked for six days in March when a massive Panama-flagged container ship, the Ever Given, ran aground in the single-lane stretch of the waterway. (AP)

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