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New Panama Canal Record Set by OOCL

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The 13,926 TEU Neopanamax containership OOCL France has broken the record for the largest capacity vessel to transit the Panama Canal less than a month after the previous record was set.

As this is OOCL France's first transit through the waterway, the Panama Canal honoured the vessel with the Green Connection Award in recognition of its commitment to emissions reductions by using the Panama Canal route.

By using the waterway, this vessel helped reduce approximately 5,000 to 26,000 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) in comparison to alternative routes.

OOCL France, which measures 366.47 meters in length and 48.23 meters in beam, transited northbound from the Pacific to the Atlantic Ocean.

The previous record was set on May 2, 2017, by the COSCO Development containership, which measures 366.45 meters in length and 48.26 meters in beam and has a 13,092 TEU.

OOCL France will now go on to the Port of Virginia to be the biggest vessel to visit the US East Coast.

Deployed as part of the new Ocean Alliance's weekly ECX1 service, the OOCL France is one of 11 vessels that connect the Asia-US East Coast ports via the Panama Canal.

The OOCL France is the second vessel in this service to transit through the Expanded Canal after the COSCO Development earlier this month.

To date, a total of 1,360 Neopanamax vessels have transited the Expanded Canal since it first opened.

Of this total, containerships have represented approximately 43.8% of traffic, followed by liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) carriers and liquefied natural gas (LNG) carriers, which represent approximately 29 and 8.1%.

Jorge L. Quijano, Panama Canal Administrator, said:  “This trend towards the transit of 13,000 TEU or greater vessels demonstrates the acceptance and trust that the shipping industry has with the service provided by the Expanded Canal.”

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