Maersk previously halted cargo deliveries in the region following Houthi attacks on ships
Dutch shipping major AP Moller-Maersk plans to restart shipments through the Red Sea after a pause earlier this month, following attacks on vessels by Houthi rebels, the company announced on Sunday. According to a statement, Maersk expects the route to be more secure now that the US and allies have deployed naval ships to the area to deter further attacks.
“As of Sunday 24 December 2023, we have received confirmation that the previously announced multi-national security initiative Operation Prosperity Guardian (OPG) has now been set up and deployed to allow maritime commerce to pass through the Red Sea / Gulf of Aden and once again return to using the Suez Canal as a gateway between Asia and Europe,” Maersk said in the statement.
“With the OPG initiative in operation, we are preparing to allow for vessels to resume transit through the Red Sea both eastbound and westbound.”
The company said it would provide more details on the resumption of shipping in the area in the coming days, but warned that the decision to resume transportation may be reversed if the security conditions do not improve.
Major global freight companies have faced a number of attacks by Yemen-based Houthi rebels over the past several weeks. The assaults took place in the Bab el-Mandeb strait, a waterway that leads to the Suez Canal, a major thoroughfare for global trade.
The Houthi leadership said it was targeting Israeli-bound ships in response to the ongoing war in Gaza. However, shipping companies viewed the situation as risky and started halting and rerouting their vessels. Last Tuesday, Maersk said it would redirect its vessels around the Cape of Good Hope in Africa. Later the same day, the US announced it was launching a multinational military operation to protect commerce in the area.
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December 26, 2023 at 11:26AM