Egypt opens the New Suez Canal today and maritime services group, Global Navigation Solutions (GNS), has been named as supplier of all new charts for the waterway.
The Egyptian authorities (Suez Canal Authority and Egyptian Navy Hydrographic Department) have produced new charts of both the Old and New Canals, replacing the existing Admiralty charts for the region, and they have advised that no vessels will be permitted to pass through Suez Canal unless they are carrying the new charts.
Egypt has carried out the £8.2billion upgrade of the Canal, built in 1869, to include a 21-mile “bypass” along the 120-mile waterway and deepening it so as to allow ships to travel in different directions simultaneously along that stretch and reduces transit time to 11 hours from 18, according to the operator. New ports and other facilities are also planned.
Officials have dubbed it as “Egypt’s gift to the world”.
They predict the renovations will help increase revenue from £3.5bn to £8.4bn by 2023.
The enlarged canal will allow ships to sail in both directions between the Mediterranean Sea and the Red Sea, and is expected to lead to an immediate doubling in the capacity of the Suez Canal from 49 to 97 ships per day.
Hayley Van Leeuwen, of GNS, said: “Obviously, it is important for the flow of international trade that we help avoid a bottleneck of delayed vessels. We can supply to vessels in most parts of the world inside 48 hours.”