Israel Gets Last of German Ships

The Zim Yisrael, the last in a series of eight new container ships built in Germany for Israel’s Zim shipping line, arrived in Haifa port Monday.

All eight identical vessels were built in the northern German port of Kiel. The first was delivered two years ago, with subsequent ships delivered at the rate of one every three months.

The 46,700-ton vessel, which cost $300 million, brought with it 200 full shipping containers it had picked up in Antwerp, Belgium, en route. But its full capacity is 3,000 containers.

The Zim Yisrael, captained by veteran seaman Hillel Yarkoni, is staffed by a crew of 20. The ship departs Wednesday on its maiden voyage, which will ply a route to Mediterranean and European ports.

The ship will then cross the Atlantic to the United States, continue through the Panama Canal to the Pacific, visit West Coast ports in the United States and continue to the Far East.

The ship is due home after a 105-day voyage.

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