Although the Covid pandemic has been devastating to Tocumen International Airport, Panama Canal cruising and the hotel and tourism industry, the Canal continues to operate although with intense provisions to guarantee the health and safety of the Canal workforce and hence the country as a whole.
Monday, August 10, the SK RESOLUTE became the 10,000th ship to use the new expanded locks. The ship was carrying liquefied natural gas (LNG) to China. The ship began its journey in the Gulf of Mexico, on the east coast of the United States, passed southbound through the Canal using the new, expanded locks, and then continued onward to China. Each supersized ship transiting the new locks pays around $750,000 per transit. The SK RESOLUTE has made 13 transits through the expanded interoceanic route since it began using it in 2018, including 7 crossings this year.
“Reaching this [10,000] mark just over four years after the opening of the expanded Canal, reaffirms the competitiveness of the interoceanic highway, backed by the continuous, safe and reliable service that we have maintained in the midst of the current world situation”, said the Canal administrator, Ricaurte Vásquez.
“Ships that transport liquefied natural gas represents the third type of vessel that uses the expanded Canal, with around 12% of transits, surpassed only by container ships with 46% and those of liquefied petroleum gas with 25%,” said an ACP release.
This week also marks the 106th Anniversary of the opening of the Panama Canal.