Danish logistics group A.P. Moller-Maersk's Maersk Line shipping arm said it is considering proposals from the Suez Canal Authority for a new toll system that could involve advance payments.
"They have proposed a new payment method and presented it to us, and we are looking at it now," a company spokesman said.
The Wall Street Journal earlier quoted Canal Authority Chairman Mohab Mamish as saying it aimed to levy charges for three years or five years in advance.
Talks with Maersk, Geneva-based Mediterranean Shipping Co. and France's CMA CGM were going well and an agreement to come into effect at the start of 2017 might be reached as early as next week, he told the newspaper.
Representatives of the major container shipping companies are meeting this week at a conference in Copenhagen.
CMA CGM had no immediate comment.
Maersk says Suez Canal Authority proposes new toll system