News

China Wants to Divert its Ships From Egypt’s Suez Canal to New Arctic Route

China Wants to Divert its Ships From Egypt’s Suez Canal to New Arctic Route

3b7a48ec02788bd1d1f4fc0ec2e45030

China will urge ships carrying its flag to change their route from Egypt’s Suez Canal to the much faster Northwest Passage in the Arctic, a state-owned Chinese newspaper said, with the world-leading trader publishing a shipping guide to the new lane.

The shipping lane through the Arctic, which has been opened up by melting ices prompted by climate change, will benefit Chinese companies economically since transportation costs will be reduced, as the route is shorter than those traditionally used by China. For instance, the distance between Shanghai and Hamburg is 2800 nautical miles shorter than taking the route through the Suez Canal, according to Reuters.

Despite the route being largely inaccessible during most of the year due to its ice-covered waters, the Arctic sea ice is slowly retreating, providing China with an opportunity to remold global trade flows and more forcefully assert itself as the global trade giant that it is.

China’s Maritime Safety Administration published on April 5 a detailed 356-page Chinese-language guide to the new route, which includes nautical charts and information on sea ice conditions for the Northwest Passage, the China Daily newspaper said.

“There will be ships with Chinese flags sailing through this route in the future,” government spokesman Liu Pengfei was quoted as saying, without giving any specific time frame.

“Once this route is commonly used, it will directly change global maritime transportation and have a profound influence on international trade, the world economy, capital flow and resource exploitation,” he continued.

However, the new route is not without dangers. The still-present ice can cause shipwrecks and the lack of infrastructure in the area and the unstable climate can negatively impact transportation efficiency, said Wu Yuxiao, a maritime administration official.

In 2014, a Canadian vessel became the first cargo ship to sail unescorted through the Northwest Passage.

The Suez Canal has for long been the main route used by Chinese ships to reach Europe, its largest market. As a result, China has had deeply-vested interests in increasing its presence in the area and investing in logistics, manufacturing, finance and industrial projects there.

Egypt has thus been a major beneficiary of China having an interest to develop the Suez Canal area, something that may come to an end with China’s re-routing announcement.

Arab League Secretary General Calls for 'Special Criminal Court' for Israel
Egypt Shuts Down Three International Schools, Warns 28 Others 'Against Violations'

Subscribe to our newsletter


News

More in News

Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak Shares War Memories in Rare Appearance

Egyptian StreetsOctober 15, 2019

New IMF Chief Hails Egypt’s Economic Reforms

Egyptian StreetsOctober 15, 2019

Uncontrollable Wild Fires in Lebanon Force Residents to Leave their Homes

Egyptian StreetsOctober 15, 2019

Sisi Blames Renaissance Dam Crisis on January 25th Uprising: Egypt Bared Its Back and Shoulder in 2011

Egyptian StreetsOctober 15, 2019

Political Elite Outsider Kais Saied Elected As Tunisia’s President

Egyptian StreetsOctober 14, 2019

The Story of the 18-Year Old Boy Stabbed For Defending A Girl From Harassment

Egyptian StreetsOctober 13, 2019

The Egyptian Medical Syndicate Elects Its First Female Chairperson

Egyptian StreetsOctober 12, 2019

New Minimum Wage Raise for Civil Servants Coming Next Month

Egyptian StreetsOctober 12, 2019