Ukraine became "a stone on the road" the European transit

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Weakening of transit potential any more isn't a factor of only domestic policy of Ukraine. The difficult procedures accompanying registration of transit, compel consignors to travel over our country from neighboring countries.

As k became known ": ", soon at meeting of the National Security and Defense Council consideration of problems of full use of the transit status of Ukraine is planned. In the draft decision, the National Security and Defense Council prepared for meeting, it is noted that "the transit capacity of Ukraine which on the volumes of a turn, infrastructures of transport communications is the greatest in Europe, is used only for 60%". Income from transit and complex of the related services makes about 6% of gross domestic product.

For comparison: at the Baltic States this indicator is equal about 30%. From - for defective use of transit potential Ukraine annually receives less about $2,5 billion. In the draft decision of the National Security and Defense Council many actual initiatives, capable to correct a situation are provided. According to the most pessimistic forecasts, all of them can be reduced only to one formal step - creation in the three-months time of national agency on transit transportations. It "studying and planning of transit streams, and also strategic and current management of all system of transit transportations" has to become the main function.


Through the territory of Ukraine pass four of ten international transport corridors: No. 3 Berlin (Dresden) - Vrotslav - Krakow - Lviv - Kiev, No. 5 Trieste - Budapest - Lviv, the No. 7 Danube (water), No. 9 Helsinki - St.-Petersburg - Kiev - Alexandroupoli (Greece). Nine priority and perspective routes are defined in 1994 at the second Pan-European conference of Ministers of Transport on the lake of Crete. In 1997 in this list it was added 10-й a corridor: Greece - Austria.

Ukraine, having become the champion by quantity of the international transport corridors (ITC), on it I didn't stop. In 1996 the country joined MTK Europe - the Caucasus - Asia (TRACECA), together with Poland implementation of the MTK Gdansk projects - Odessa, and also Europe - Asia (through frontier transitions in Donetsk and Lugansk areas with the direction to Kazakhstan) began.Euphoria of officials of that time from quantity of the transport corridors which have got to Ukraine, and a mention of this fact to a place also are out of place very similar on present "preparation for Euro-2012". At the end of 1990-x even there was a joke that earlier we had wood goblins and brownies, and now in Ministry of Transport appeared also "bellboys".

However this subject for a long time not "top" for transport officials that confirms at least that fact that data on investments into development of MTK are given in the official site of Mintranssvyaz during 1998-2004, and information in the section "Transport Corridors" was updated the last time in July 2008-го.


The purpose of the project of development of the transport corridors as which initiator the European Commission acted still in 1980-е, optimization of transport streams in Western Europe is. After disintegration of a socialist camp the emphasis was placed on development of transport infrastructure of countries of Eastern Europe for providing growing freght traffic between Europe and Hugo's countries - East Asia. Use for these purposes of the ports of Bulgaria, Romania and Ukraine would allow to unload from motor transport of the road of Western Europe. The general strategy of EU is directed on it on increase of environmental standards and increase in a share of the most eco-friendly of a railway and water transport also. So, 44% of volumes of transportations are the share of motor transport in EU countries, on sea - 41, on railway - 8, on internal water - 4%. And, for example, in Ukraine in recent years the share of railway transport makes 50-55%, sea - about 25, automobile - 20-25%.

Requirements to thoroughfares and infrastructure of MTK mean that this project is focused on the postcommunist countries. After all in the Western and the Central Europe, proceeding from these requirements, the majority of highways for a long time correspond to these criteria and without the "corridor" status. The condition of transport infrastructure of Ukraine, even in the MTK directions, leaves much to be desired. Exception is unless infrastructure of the railroads.

The provision of transport infrastructure could remain only our problem from the point of view of providing internal and is export - import transportations. But the main idea of the MTK project - providing conditions for the international transit in a regional and intercontinental context. In this regard MTK development in Ukraine needs to be considered as a factor of the international competition for freght traffics.


It is necessary to analyze efficiency of development of MTK in a complex. For example, the corridor No. 3 - Lviv - Kiev should be considered Berlin and as the direction through Kovel - Yagodin according to whom passes the main stream of motor transport to Germany. To components of this MTK the site of the broad gage coming from Volhynia on 400 km on the territory of the Southern Poland is also. Concerning No. 3 Berlin MTK - Kiev acts as our main competitor Belarus. The highway Brest - Minsk - border with the Russian Federation (610 km) - its main advantage as it is a key element of ensuring transit in/from the Central Russia. Its reconstruction started at the beginning of 1990-x when the European Reconstruction and Development Bank allocated the first credit in $50 million. In 2008 complex restoration of the route came to the end, on what 435 billion were in the last two years directed is white. rub (about $200 million).

In Ukraine while works on the highway Kiev - Kovel - Yagodin ("Varshavka") worth about 600 million UAH are continued. From - for bad qualities of a roadbed haulers preferred to use in recent years the route through Zhitomir - Exactly - Lutsk - Yagodin. On this route which is Chop Highway site - Kiev, reconstruction in the Zakarpatye, Lvov and Rovno areas is already complete. The cost of the project financed with participation of the European Reconstruction and Development Bank, - about 600 million euros.

According to Mintrass RB, in 2008 through the territory of Belarus is executed 992,3 thousand transit trips of foreign haulers. For comparison: to Ukraine the last performed about 1 million flights (export, import, transit). And the share of transit made 55%. It is necessary to tell, what even after completion of reconstruction of highways from the western border to Kiev for transit transportations there will be a journey problem through the capital in view of the low capacity of bridges through Dnepr.

But the main competition from Belarus is felt in the sphere of railway transit. In recent years from 65-7 million t of transit volumes of a cargo transportation of "Ukrzaliznytsi" about 40 million t it was the share of transportations in/from the ports of Ukraine and 25-30 million t - of overland frontier transitions on the western border. For the same period volumes of railway transit through Belarus made 50,6 million t, that is is twice more, than overland transit of Ukraine. And the lion's share of this freght traffic goes through one frontier transition - Brest.

The situation with Belarus shows that to our neighbors many traditional freght traffics which would be theoretically more favorable to be directed through Ukraine left. For example, transit of timber from Serbia to the Russian Federation for construction of the Finnish lodges. Even wines from Bulgaria to Russia follow much longer way - through Romania, Hungary, Slovakia, Poland and Belarus.


Transit reorientation from the Balkan countries to Belarus sustains a real loss for MTK No. 5 which at the first view of the card should have no competitive routes when transporting from the countries of Southern Europe. For autotransit of a problem can arise only in winter time when crossing the Carpathians. For railway transit by a bottleneck there is the single-line Beskidsky tunnel constructed still in 1886 at the time of Avstro - Hungary though thus there is a stock of carrying opportunities.

The problem of a tunnel exists long ago, but only in June, 2008 of "Ukrzaliznytsya" declared prequalification procedure on design of the Beskidsky tunnel. In particular, tunnel reconstruction with construction of the access roads, a new two-acceptable railway tunnel 1822 m long is provided. And on October 7, 2009 the head of department of credit agreements of "Ukrzaliznytsi" Yury Simchuk told to journalists that the first stage of the tender and for a victory in it is carried out there were two applicants - the Spanish and Austrian companies. The company intends to sign the contract with the contractor until the end of the year. The project will be realized with European Reconstruction and Development Bank participation with granting the credit of $40 million

But except a condition of a car - and the railroads, for this MTK not less the competition in the sphere of terminal business in border areas on a joint of Ukraine, Slovakia and Hungary has importance. Need of an overload from eurocars in cars of a broad gage (and vice versa), and also the factor of quality of our highways and the long transit distances assuming more optimum option of delivery of freights from Europe by motor transport with a further overload on railway transport, promoted development in the region of the logistic centers. Around Chopsko - Batevsko - Mukachevsky transport knot the main logistic centers are terminals "Carpathians", "Zakarpatinterport", "PAKOBO", "Liski". Similar terminals work in Hungary and Slovakia.

In 2008 for the Ukrainian terminals in Zakarpatye there was a serious competitive threat.On November 25 the contract between JSC TransContainer ("daughter" of the Russian Railway) and the Cargo Slovakia company (ZSSK Cargo) about transfer to the Russian railroad workers of the container terminal of "Good" (10 km from border was signed with Ukraine) in rent for a period of 15 years. As the president of the company Pyotr Baskakov declared then, "the convenient geographical position and infrastructure of the terminal allow to process on it more than 250 thousand TEU (an equivalent of the 20-foot container. - Edition) in a year". It is planned that from ports of the countries of ATR containers by sea will be delivered in the Poppet and Trieste ports, and from there - regular the block - trains to the "Good" terminal. There it is planned to carry out an overload of containers from platforms of the European track on platforms of a track of 1520 mm and further the block - trains (the operator - JSC TransContainer) to send them to Russia transit through Ukraine".

So exotic route of delivery of containers to Russia shows that the Russian Railway is rather aimed at base creation in Slovakia, than on real transportations through the ports of Adriatic Sea. After all it is much simpler to deliver containers to underloaded terminals to Odessa or Ilyichevsk from which regular container trains to Moscow and other regions of Russia ply. The Russian Railway has plans of implementation of the similar project and in Hungary, at border station of Zakhon.

It should be noted also that Zakarpatye can be considered as the direction of one more MTK: No. 4 Berlin - Constance (thanks to a site of a narrow (European) track 113 km long between PSF and Halmeu's Romanian station). It is one of the most optimum options of transit of Bulgaria - Romania to Slovakia - Poland - Germany. Before increase of tariffs at the beginning of 2009 on this site about 1 million t of freights was monthly transported. From - for unreasoned tariff policy now this freght traffic practically ran low and was reoriented on Hungary.


The Danube MTK No. 7 yet didn't become for Ukraine a full-fledged transit corridor. In - the first, Danube is the share of Nizhny of less than 10% of a cargo transportation of all river basin. In - the second, Ukraine can become the full-fledged transitor only after implementation of the project of creation of a ship course (GSH) Danube - the Black Sea. Romania counteracts all last years this project, in particular using the status of the member of the European Union. We have an efficiency of counteraction of Romania and destiny of this project the minister and the director of GP "The Delta — the Pilot" (the customer of construction depend on the one who at present. - Edition).While the Ukrainian GSH formally isn't a site of the Danube MTK. Officially the extent of the Ukrainian site of this corridor makes 70 km, that is from Rennie to the cape Izmail Chatal where the Sulinsky channel begins.


The most exotic is No. 9 MTK. This route looks so impressively that it call the modern version of an ancient way from the Varangian in Greeks. It is difficult to assume what can be real freght traffic from Finland to Greece. After all both mass freights, and high-tariff containerized to deliver in this direction by sea round Europe more favourably. It is indicative that the volume of railway transit through Ukraine within this MTK in 2008 made only 7,38 million t. The lion's share of this volume is the share of transportations between Belarus - Russia and Moldova - Romania - Bulgaria. Though infrastructure this MTK passing through Ukraine, the most developed.

Highways from border with Russia and Belarus to Kiev and to Odessa to the Ukrainian measures are ideal further almost throughout. The condition of the railroads is similar. Thanks to the autobahn Kiev - Odessa this MTK is the leader on the enclosed investments.

This corridor is important for Ukraine first of all for motor transportation transit. Before crisis foreign haulers carried out on this direction about 250 thousand transit flights a year. And all this stream follows further through Moldova. Though many years Ukraine can't already realize the project of creation Ukrainian - the Romanian ferry of Orlovk - Isakcha between Rennie and Izmail. For transit motor transport in the direction of East Romania, Bulgaria, Turkey and Greece this route is 300 km shorter, there is no need twice to cross border of Moldova and the paid bridge in Romania. Thanks to this project it is possible to create various service infrastructure, it is transport - warehouse complexes, etc. in depressive Pridunavye. The project is supported at the level of local authorities of Ukraine and Romania, but for the unclear reasons still isn't realized, despite the symbolical sum of investments of 5 million euros. At reorientation at least the payback period of the project will make 20% of autotransit of MTK No. 9 for this route only one year. Further the cumulative income of the crossing, service objects, the sums of receipts of the budget are estimated at 150-200 million UAH a year.But Mintranssvyaz silence concerning this project together with plans for highway Odessa construction - Rennie on the terms of concession (that is unreal) confirms that in the next years the main transitor in MTK No. 9 there will be Kishinev.


Despite quantity of transport corridors, Ukraine loses in recent years the positions. Especially it was demonstrated by an economic crisis. Following the results of nine months 2009, transit goods turnover on the railroads of Ukraine was reduced by 40%. The sea trade ports of Ukraine reduced volumes of cargo handling of transit by 28%. Belarus practically remained at the level of last year, and the ports of the Baltic States reduced volumes only by 1,9%. And the lion's share of cargo handling (80-90%) here is the share of transit freights from Russia and Kazakhstan. Thus the main competitors of the Ukrainian ports - черноморско - the Azov terminals of the Russian Federation increased cargo handling by 14%. It confirms that earlier transit through Ukraine was a compulsory measure as there were no own port capacities.

Judging by the materials of the National Security and Defense Council preparing for meeting on problems of transit, the main problem is the customs legislation which is still directed "on fight against smuggling", instead of on attraction of new freght traffics. Especially strange in the conditions of membership of Ukraine in the WTO the mechanism of financial guarantees looks at railway transit, and the list of freights on which this mechanism extends, constantly increases. In the beginning it were four positions, by their 2008 became already 15. In April 2008-го this list was increased by No. 396 order GTSU by 84 positions. Here entered even such unattractive for potential smuggling, as straw, fodder, synthetic clothes and rubber footwear. Therefore in the draft decision of the National Security and Defense Council it is offered to revise urgently the inventory, subject to guaranteeing, in a month to provide to the railroads the status of a customs carrier. For other actions (development legislative, regulations and governmental programs, studying of the international experience, activization of negotiations with the main transitors, arrangement of check points, functional researches of activity of the central authorities, etc.) much longer terms of performance are provided.It is quite possible that the new special national agency in the course of which creation all other problems will fade into the background will be engaged in it.

Alexander Arbuzov


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