Al-Sisi attributed the decline in Suez Canal revenues to the crises witnessed in the world and the region (Suez Media Authority)

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi confirmed on Monday that Suez Canal revenues had declined by between 40% and 50%, due to disruption of navigation traffic in the Red Sea against the backdrop of Houthi attacks.

Al-Sisi said, during the 2024 Egypt International Petroleum Conference, “Today, the shipping corridor, which used to generate approximately $10 billion annually, has declined by 40% to 50%” since the beginning of this year.

Al-Sisi attributed the reason for this to “crises,” and said, “Egypt faced the repercussions of the Corona virus for two years, then the Ukrainian-Russian crisis, and then what you see on our different borders with Libya and Sudan,” according to his speech broadcast on local channels.

He added, "And now with the Gaza Strip, you see the shipping corridor, which used to bring approximately $10 billion into Egypt annually, has declined by 40% to 50%," stressing that "he is not complaining, but talking about reality."

The Suez Canal is considered one of the most important canals and straits around the world, and it is the shortest shipping route between Europe and Asia.

The head of the Suez Canal Authority, Osama Rabie, said that the canal’s dollar revenue has decreased by 40% since the beginning of the year compared to 2023, after Houthi attacks in Yemen on Israeli ships or ships heading to Israel diverted their sailing path away from this corridor.

The Executive Director of the International Monetary Fund, Kristalina Georgieva, had previously warned of the repercussions of a prolonged war in the Gaza Strip, while noting that shipping traffic in the Red Sea had declined by 40%.

The canal's revenues constitute one of the most prominent sources of foreign exchange in Egypt, in addition to remittances from Egyptians working abroad, exports, and tourism.

In the fiscal year 2022-2023, the channel achieved financial revenues amounting to $9.4 billion, which is the highest annual revenue recorded, with an increase of about 35% over the previous year, according to what the authority announced last June.

The decline in waterway revenues coincides with Egypt going through one of the worst economic crises in its history, after the annual inflation rate reached a record level, driven by the decline in the value of the local currency and the shortage of foreign currency in light of the bulk of food being imported.

Cairo's external debts have more than tripled in the last decade, reaching $164.7 billion.

Since October 7, Israel has been waging a devastating war on the Gaza Strip, leaving tens of thousands of victims, most of them children and women, in addition to an unprecedented humanitarian catastrophe and a noticeable deterioration in infrastructure and property, according to Palestinian and UN data, which led to Israel appearing before the International Court of Justice on charges of committing Genocide.

Source: Al Jazeera + agencies