A 400-meter-long container ship that blocked the Suez Canal for six days in March began its journey out of the waterway Wednesday after its Japanese owners and the Suez Canal Authority (SCA) reached a compensation settlement.  
The Ever Given became wedged diagonally across the canal March 23, blocking a single-lane section. It was finally re-floated March 30 following a massive effort that involved several tugboats and dredging vessels.  
But the ship has been detained since then in an area known as the Great Bitter Lake at the canal’s midpoint, while SCA and ship owner Shoei Kisen negotiated compensation for losses incurred while the canal was blocked, disrupting international trade.  
About 100 ships were waiting to enter the canal when the ship was finally dislodged. Some estimates say the blockage cost global trade around $5billion dollars a day.
 
The authority had reportedly demanded more than a $900 million to cover the cost of salvage and lost revenue, but later lowered it to $500 million. The terms of the final agreement were not disclosed.  
SCA had scheduled a ceremony as the ship left Wednesday. The ship and its cargo of about 18,300 containers is bound for Rotterdam in the Netherlands, its original destination.  
The 193-kilometer Suez Canal connects the Red Sea on the south with the Mediterranean Sea on the north and provides the shortest trade route between Asia and Europe. 

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