The Suez Canal turns 153 years!

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In 1858, Ferdinand de Lesseps formed the Suez Canal Company for the express purpose of building the canal. Construction of the canal lasted from 1859 and was officially opened on 17th November 1869. Today, 17th November 2022, the Suez Canal turns 153 years of operation. 

The idea of a canal through the isthmus of Suez was not new in 1858 and already back at the time when the pharaohs ruled in Egypt there was a link from the Red Sea to the Mediterranean via the river Nile. French Emperor Napoleon explored the possibilities of a proper canal, but abandoned the plan as they incorrectly concluded that canal operation would require use of locks, which are time consuming and costly to construct. 

Since the opening in 1869, the canal has been widened and deepened several times and in 2015 the latest expansion, a new 35 kilometres bypass section, was finished. Today, the Suez Canal can accomodate vessels with maximum draft of 20m, airdraft of 68m, unrestricted length and offer considerable time savings for vessels and seafarers.