The illegal construction of the Kerch bridge an urgent need to stop and this is possible only under pressure from international partners of Ukraine and additional sanctions against Russia. This was stated by Minister of infrastructure Volodymyr Omelian, the press service Mininfrastruktury.
According to him, the occupation of the Crimea have put a special emphasis on strengthening the marine components of national security and defense, which directly affects transportation infrastructure and economy of Ukraine: “Today, there is a decrease in the number of vessel calls and cargo handling in seaports of Mariupol and Berdyansk, which has a negative effect on the economic performance of enterprises. Russia on a permanent basis violates the fundamental principles of international Maritime law, leading active commercial, fishing activities, construction and engineering work in the exclusive Maritime economic zone and territorial waters of Ukraine and continues to commit unlawful in relation to Ukraine actions which over time have become increasingly systemic in nature.”
Omeljan recalled that on may 24, 2017 of the Russian Federation announced the restriction of parameters for the passage of vessels between the Black and the Azov sea and back under the arch of transport crossing (bridge) across the Kerch Strait. According to him, it will lead to reduction of export of Ukrainian metal only in the US, 1 million tons per year.
The Minister noted, which will greatly worsen the condition of the grain logistics of Azov region due to a significant rise in price of the freight ships that will meet the dimensional requirements of the crossing through the Kerch Strait. For example, right now about 50% of ships that were loaded at the terminal, OOO Ukrtransagro (port Mariupol) over the last marketing year, do not meet dimensional restrictions that may enter the Russian Federation.
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According to him, the increase in the cost of freight will affect the distribution of traffic of agricultural products exported by Ukraine in the direction of Black sea ports and will lead to a significant drop in rates of transshipment in the ports of the Azov sea, as well as to reduce the load of grain terminals and ports of Mariupol and Berdyansk. The port of Berdyansk loses 448,7 thousand tons of cargo, loss of port charges through 2017 will amount to 5,6 million UAH. Mariupol port will lose in 2017 705 thousand tons of cargo, and the loss of port fees is 3.5 million.
Earlier, the head of Administration of seaports of Ukraine Raivis Veckagans said that the construction of the Kerch bridge has reduced the turnover of Berdyansk sea port is 30%.