News 08 Nov, 2011

Egypt - Carriage of Armed Guards, Weapons and Ammunition through the Suez Canal

In August 2011 the Egyptian Ministry of Defence announced a prohibition on the carriage of armed guards, weapons and ammunition on vessels transiting the Suez Canal. However, the requirements were not enforced at the time due to discussions with other Egyptian authorities regarding the possible negative impact of such regulations on the volume of shipping using the Suez Canal.

The Club has been advised by Egyptian Marine Insurance Consultations and Services (EMICS), Alexandria that the regulations have since been amended. Vessels are now permitted to transit the Suez Canal with armed guards, weapons and ammunition on board, provided a letter endorsed by the vessel’s flag state is submitted to the Suez Canal Authority prior to transit.

The letter, which need not be in any particular format, must contain the following information:

  • The quantity and type of weapons and ammunition on board,
  • The number of armed guards on board,
  • Details of the armed guards’ employer, and
  • Confirmation that the weapons will not be used while the vessel is in Egyptian territorial waters.

Although the foregoing requirements are presently being enforced, further changes to the regulatory regime concerning the carriage of armed guards, weapons and ammunition through the Suez Canal cannot be ruled out.

Members requiring further guidance should contact the Loss Prevention department.