Boston, MA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 02/04/2013 -- A new law which will better protect private firms operating in Ukraine's port sector is likely to lead to greater interest from investors in the country's ports. Under the new law, any infrastructure built through private investment will become the property of the investor.
We believe that this new law is in answer to problems faced at the Port of Illichivsk by Ukrtranscontainer (UTC), the Ukrainian subsidiary of Russia's National Container Company (NCC). The port operator's concession was suspended in mid 2009 after UTC had invested over US$61mn in the facility. UTC once more operates at Illichivisk and this new law should ensure against such an occurrence happening again. It should also lay to rest other port operator's fears about moving into the Ukrainian maritime sector.
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With investment protected, BMI expects further expansion at the nation's ports. One massive investment project in the container shipping sector is already underway at the Port of Odessa, due for launch next year. The Quarantine Mole project is being developed by German/Ukrainian port operator HPC Ukraina and is due for completion in 2013. It will provide the port with two new container berths and a draught of 16 metres (m), allowing it to cater for the largest container vessels. The facility will increase Odessa's container handling capacity to 1.2mn twenty-foot equivalent units (TEU).
Expansion projects such as Quarantine Mole offer upside risk to our forecasts over the medium term. Stronger growth is required at both the Port of Odessa and Illichivsk over the medium term, as both ports are struggling to recapture their pre-2009 levels.
Headline Industry Data
- 2012 Port of Odessa tonnage throughput forecast to grow 5.5%, over the mid-term we project a 23.8% increase.
- 2012 Port of Odessa container throughput forecast to decline by 2.8%, over the mid-term we project a 15.4% increase.
- 2012 total trade growth forecast at 4.5%.
Key Industry Trends
Odessa Benefits From Auto Imports Outperformance
Car imports via Odessa's roll-on, roll-off (ro-ro) terminal offer the Ukrainian port some respite from the slowdown in trade, with the country's maritime sector buffeted by slowing tonnage throughput and declines in container volumes. Automotive imports are forecast to record double-digit growth in 2012 and are outpacing the country's overall projected import growth.
Yuzhny Throughput Down, But Handling Mega Bulk Vessels
The port of Yuzhny has handled one of its biggest vessels to date, the V Kerkis, a 209,000 deadweight tonne (DWT) bulk carrier. The ship docked at Yuzhny and loaded iron ore for export to China. Despite its ability to handle mega vessels Yuzhny's throughput has dropped y-o-y in the first eight months of the year. Total tonnage throughput at the port fell by 0.8% to 15mn tonnes in January-August 2012.
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