14 Jun 2023 12:20

Ukraine unable to sell Belgorod-Dniestrovsky Commercial Sea Port at reduced price

MOSCOW. June 14 (Interfax) - An auction for the sale of the Belgorod-Dniestrovsky Commercial Sea Port has been called off due to lack of interest, Ukrainian media reported, quoting the ProZorro.Sales electronic platform.

Ukraine's State Property Fund had halved the starting price at what would have been a new privatization auction for the Belgorod-Dniestrovsky Commercial Sea Port in the Odessa region to UAH 92.46 million or $2.5 million from UAH 184.92 million not including VAT. The auction itself had been put back from June 6 to June 14. The deposit was also halved, to UAH 18.49 million.

The port has been put up for sale several times. A first auction for the port with a starting price of UAH 187.57 million was called off. Vitaly Kropachev's Ukrdoninvest LLC won a repeat auction for Belgorod-Dniestrovsky Commercial Sea Port in March, bidding against three other companies and offering UAH 220 million. However, Ukrdoninvest disputed the terms of the purchase/sale agreement during negotiations with the regional branch of the State Property Fund and backed out of the deal.

The Property Fund in May scheduled another auction for the port, for June 6, at a starting price of UAH 184.92 million.

The port is located on the right bank of the Dniester Estuary, which is 42 km long and 4.5 to 12 km wide, and is connected by a strait to the Black Sea. The distance to Odessa is 80 km. The port specializes in the transshipment of timber cargo, mineral fertilizers, iron ore pellets, metal products and grain cargo.

Vessels enter via the approach channel of the Dniester-Tsaregorodsky duct, which is 1.5 km long and the Dniester-Limansky part, 14.5 km. long. The depth of the approach channel is 3 m, or 3.5-4.5 m per its passport. A single property complex is located on the territory of 64.4 hectares.

The State Property Fund said earlier that the port was unprofitable, despite the fact that since 2022 it has played an important role as a logistics center for ports on the Danube. According to the Fund, the port has great potential for the development of Ukrainian exports and requires investment in its development.

The Belgorod-Dniester port suspended operations in spring 2022, but in April, it re-opened in a new capacity - as a transport and logistics center for the Izmail, Reni and Ust-Danube Ukrainian ports. There are open cargo warehouses on its territory with an area of 180,000 sq. m. and covered cargo warehouses with an area of 12,500 sq. m., including ramps for railway cars and grain warehouses. The center is a customs territory with a full range of cargo handling services.

The Belgorod-Dniestrovsky port also has an extensive system of railway tracks with a 60-wagon storage siding and closed TIR parking for 200 vehicles.