Article 97


(1) The tonnage on which all dues and charges to be paid by vessels, as specified in these regulations, are assessed, is the net tonnage resulting from the system of measurement laid down by the International Commission held at Constantinople in 1873, and duly entered, on the special certificates issued by the competent authorities
in each country.

In assessing the dues, any alteration of net tonnage subsequent to the delivery of the above mentioned certificates is taken into account.

(2) In order that the exemptions from measurement shown on the special certificate may apply, there must be no merchandise, commercial stores, or supplies, of any kind in the portions of spaces which are entitled to exemption.

(a) Should a vessel, at anytime, transit with passengers, merchandise of any kind, or bunker coal, or commercial stores of any description, in any portion whatever of any exempted or deducted spaces, the whole of that spaces is added to the net tonnage and can never more be exempted from measurement.

(b) Nevertheless, the Suez Canal Authority agrees that in case where the vessel is sold, the new owners can again claim exemption of the exemptable spaces previously taxed. The sale of the vessel must of course be effective and bona fide. A new Suez Canal Special Tonnage Certificate must be obtained.


(a) When any bottom space is utilized over 6 inches for the carriage of bunker during the transit of the Canal, its cubical capacity will be added to the tonnage.

(b) Contrary, however, to the Rules now in force, this addition will not be a permanent character, the cubical capacity of the said spaces will only be added to the tonnage when they are utilized.


(a) The Canal Authority Officials are empowered to ascertain whether cargo or passengers, are carried in any space not included in the net tonnage entered on the vessel's special certificate.

(b) And, generally, may verify whether all spaces which ought to be included in the tonnage are entered on the certificate and are correctly determined thereon. Seamen occasionally taken on board vessels passing through the Suez Canal are considered as passengers, unless they are duly entered on the ship's articles and certified as being intended for vessels belonging to the same owners.


Unfixed and unenclosed deck loads are not included in the measurement. Closed deck loads including containers on weather deck of cargo ships are to be included in the measurement.


(a) Every vessel not provided with a valid special tonnage certificate showing the net tonnage prescribed by the Constantinople Commission, is measured by the Canal Authority Officials in conformity with the Rules laid down by the Constantinople Commission.

(b) The net tonnage thus arrived at, is provisionally used for the assessment of dues, until such time as the vessel tenders at a subsequent transit, a special certificate duly drawn up by the competent authorities.

(c) If there are any difficulties in assessment of the net tonnage, especially in Maiden voyage, the dues shall be levied provisionally on the gross tonnage until measured in other trips.


(a) As long as the ship is not provided with Suez Canal Special Tonnage Certificate, transit dues will be levied on the temporary gross tonnage product of the empirical formula without any allowance till the presentation of the documents required.

(b) Meanwhile, owing to special arrangements necessary for transit of navy ships, a charges of 25% of the transit dues is to be applied for Navy and Auxiliary ships belonging to the Navy of different countries.


(a) Merchant vessels:

i - Which are not earning freight on their voyage.
ii - Which are only carrying fuel for their own consumption.
iii - Carrying only its own crew, with their private provisions, are considered as being in ballast.

(b) Containers on containerships, trailers on vehicle carriers, and barges on lash vessels are considered as a permanent vessel's equipment if fulfilling Suez Canal Conditions.

(c) The presence of oil residues on tankers, as well as dry bulk cargo on bulk carriers or combined carriers, does not lose the vessels the privilege of being in ballast.

(d) A small quantity of the previous cargo on the liquefied gas carriers, to maintain a low temperature inside the cargo tanks to be able of receiving the new cargo, does not lose the vessel the privilege of being in ballast.

(e) Small quantity remainder of previous packed cargo garbage, dump sweeping,.... etc., not exceeding 2M/ton on general cargo vessels does not lose the vessel the privilege of being in ballast.

(f) For human reasons, the Suez Canal Authority will, however, tolerate the presence of shipwreck survivors rescued at sea on board vessels in ballast. The presence on board of such survivors shall not render the vessel liable to dues at the full rate.

(g) A vessel landing her passengers or cargo before passing through the Canal and taking them on board afterwards will in no case be considered as being in ballast.

(h) Further, in order to be entailed to claim the benefit of the ballast rate, the volume of bunker coal or fuel must not exceed 125% of the engine room space as shown on the Suez Canal Certificate. Bunker coal or fuel should, primarily, be contained in the vessel's permanent or movable bunkers.

(i) On board vessel in ballast, the Canal Authority allows part of the bunkers to be carried in the exempted portion of the bridge without loss of the exemption.

(j) In any case, owners will have to take the necessary steps to ensure that the total volume of all bunkers on board can be easily ascertained.