The Qatari company QTerminals won the tender for the concession of property of the state-owned company Stevedoring Company (SC) Olvia. This was reported by representatives of the Ministry of Infrastructure of Ukraine.
QTerminals is engaged in port operations and shipping, handling containers, general and Ro-Ro cargo. The company was created by Mwani Qatar and Milaha, which share 51% and 49% of the shares respectively.
In 2018, Mwani Qatar signed a memorandum with USPA (Ukrainian State Port Authorities) – it is known that the document was aimed at increasing cargo turnover between the countries, including export deliveries of Ukrainian agricultural products to Qatar, as well as attracting investments in the development of port infrastructure of Ukraine.
The interest of Qatari investment companies was noticeable back in 2018. Former President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko and Executive Director of the Qatar Investment Authority Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) Sheikh Abdullah bin Mohammed bin Saud Al Thani confirmed their interest in cooperation between the parties in the investment sphere and participation in privatization.
“During the meeting, the Ukrainian side confirmed its interest in developing mutually beneficial cooperation with Qatar in the investment sphere, in particular in attracting Qatari investors to participate in the privatization of state and communal property in Ukraine,” the press service of the former head of state said in 2018 .
In addition, the parties considered the prospects for developing cooperation with Qatar in industries such as agriculture, energy, tourism and recreation infrastructure, shipbuilding and aircraft construction, as well as road construction projects and modernization of seaports.
Qatar is a priority trading partner for Ukraine among the countries of the Middle East region. According to the results of 2017 alone, the trade turnover between Ukraine and Qatar grew by 38.3% and amounted to about $ 53.5 million. According to the State Statistics Service of Ukraine, export of goods from Ukraine to Qatar in the same period increased 3.4 times and amounted to $ 42 , 3 million. In 2018, exports grew by 32.6%. In 2019, exports reached $ 65.9 million for 11 months, which corresponds to an increase of 16.1% for the same period in 2018.
Andrey Sokolov, development director of the magazine “Shipping”, notes that one of the problems that will have to be addressed in the Nikolaev region for the successful implementation of the project is the expansion of the railway capacity. The same railway line serves the existing terminals: Nika-Tera, Evrovneshtorg and Dneprobug Sea Port. To solve this problem, the concessionaire has a few more years that remain until the construction of a full-fledged grain terminal. Most likely, QTerminals will focus on grain, as part of the Qatar food security program. In this regard, we can expect an increase in cargo turnover between Ukraine and Qatar (because it is much more profitable to buy grain through own export terminal) and an increase in the capacity of grain terminals by 2-5 million tons in the Nikolaev region in 2-3 years.
According to the Stark Research analytical system, in 2018, the export turnover to Qatar amounted to 74 631 tons, of which 54 050 tons of barley and 20 581 tons of wheat, shipments were carried out from the terminals “Borivazh”, “Risoil” and “Transservice”. In 2019, exports reached 101 254 tons, of which 78 911 tons of barley and 22 343 tons of wheat. Export terminals were Risoil, Transservice and Nikmorservice. Basically, shipments to Qatar were with Handysize vessels (15-35 thousand tons), but there were several shipments with Handymax vessels (35-50 thousand tons).