COSCO Shipping Panama, a 300-meter container ship flying the flags of the Marshall Islands, moored at the Odesa port’s Khlibna Havan harbor at about 14:00 on 6 June. The vessel, which was built in 2015, is being processed by the Brooklyn-Kiev Port stevedoring company. Dockers started unloading containers from the vessel almost immediately after it berthed, the press service of the Odesa port authority announced in a statement.
According to information from the main control room of the Odesa port authority, the COSCO Shipping Panama vessel will be the first Neopanamax vessel to pass through the new locks during the international inauguration ceremony of the expanded Panama Canal. The ceremony will take place on 26 June 2016.
As reported, the Panama Canal expansion project began in 2007. The cost of the project was estimated at USD 5.25 billion, but it ultimately turned out to be higher by USD 2.3 billion. Oil supertankers of more than 170,000 displacement tons will be able to pass through the canal’s new locks. The maximum capacity of the canal will increase to 18,800 ships per year.
According to the canal’s administration, ships of up to 366 meters in length, 49 meters in width, and 12.5 meters of draft participated in the draw for the right to be the first to pass through the expanded canal’s locks.