Favorable geographical location, non-freezing deepwater ports, ramified railway and road map – these factors provide Ukraine with ample opportunities on the international transport and logistics market. However, it is possible to realize the potential only if there exists a developed transport infrastructure.
Ukraine is moving in this direction: a new round in the development of the transport sector of the country was outlined at the International Black Sea Transport Forum Trans Expo Odessa 2017, which was held on September 27-29 in Odessa.
The forum united four specialized exhibitions: the 20th international exhibition on transport and logistics TransUkraine 2017, the international specialized exhibition TransRail Ukraine 2017, the specialized exhibition Commercial and Municipal Transport 2017 and the 14th International Exhibition on Shipping, Shipbuilding and ports development Odessa 2017.
Simultaneously with the exhibitions, the 20th international conference “Transport system of Ukraine in the system of transcontinental transport routes” was held, as well as a number of specialized roundtables with participation of leading industry experts.
The coordinators of the exhibitions and conferences were the Ministry of Infrastructure of Ukraine and the Black and Azov Seas Ports Association (BASPA).
The primary sponsor of the forum was the company Turmar Marine Istanbul, the sponsor of the conference was the leading company in the field of transport and logistics DSV Company.
Cooperation with Ukraine is priority
More than 130 representatives of international specialized organizations and companies from Ukraine, Poland, Belarus, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkey, Greece, Spain, Germany, France, Italy, Belgium, Austria, China and a number of other countries took part in the Trans Expo Odessa 2017.
Ukraine was represented by the authorities and largest state enterprises such as the Ministry of Infrastructure of Ukraine, the Ukrainian Sea Ports Authority, the PJSC Ukraliznytsya, as well as seaports and a number of other Ukrainian profile companies, enterprises, research institutes, educational institutions.
The primary sponsor of the forum, Turmar Marine Istanbul (Turkey), together with the Turkish Tersan Shipyard, a business partner, presented a full range of services for shipowners at a specially equipped stand.
“The seas will continue to play an important role in connecting the continents, and maritime business cooperation is an integral part of this evolution,” Igor Sumchenko, top manager of the company, stated in an interview to the SHIPPING magazine. “Turkey and Ukraine have a common interest in investing in maritime cooperation, both on the Black Sea and beyond. We are confident that Ukrainian and Turkish maritime companies can play an important role in supporting this cooperation, which will become a catalyst for the creation of joint sea highways of the future”, he emphasized.
The second year in a row, the Association of Turkish Shipbuilding Companies Gisbir participates in the forum. At the Trans Expo Odessa the shipbuilding industry association of Turkey held a number of business negotiations with the leading specialized companies of Ukraine.
The close geographical location of Ukraine and Turkey creates favorable conditions for joint cooperation. Kemalettin Gűr, the Secretary General of the Association noted: “We can develop a joint business in the construction of ships, including military, in accordance with standards of NATO.”
The developments in the field of mechanical engineering were presented by the largest in the CIS producer of land-based city electric transport Belkommunmash (Belarus). At their stand the visitors could get acquainted with the advanced technologies that the company uses in the production of electric buses, trolleybuses and trams.
For the first time, the Spanish company Metcoex Group took part in the Trans Expo Odessa. The company specializes in the production of ship equipment and serves the shipbuilding industry in the EU, CIS and the USA. Spain showed considerable interest to Ukraine, and the seriousness of intentions regarding future cooperation was confirmed in more than ten B2B meetings with Ukrainian colleagues.
Transport system of Ukraine: prospects and investments
The most important role in the forum was devoted to the conference Transport system of Ukraine in the system of transcontinental transport routes.
First of all, the delegates discussed the functioning of the trans-Caspian transport routes in the Europe-Asia directions, the main problems of the development of the transport system of the Black Sea region and the ways of their solution, the state of the transport industry of Ukraine and its real prospects as the investment artery of the Silk Road. A special attention was paid to the issue of integration of Ukraine’s inland waterways into the regional TEN-T network of the European Union.
No less attention was paid to international intermodal transport. The leading companies presented their own ideas, the participants discussed options for optimizing the process of cargo delivery, new opportunities and measures to improve the competitiveness of transport, as well as the prospects for the development of rail transport and ferry lines in Ukraine.
New technologies in the sphere of cargo transportation were presented by the logistics company BeFlexi. The company is the world operator of transportation of non-hazardous liquid cargo in special containers, flexitanks. “Such method allows you to transport more cargo in one container than tanks and barrels, in addition, this container is environmentally friendly, it can be disposed of without harm to the environment”, the managing director, Bruno Silva, presented the novelty. According to the Head of the company’s branch in Ukraine Angelina Shepitko, it is expected that by 2022 the volume in the financial plan will reach 922.3 million dollars.
Within the framework of the conference, the theme of reforming the maritime industry as a basis for attracting investments was also considered. During the discussion, the participants shared their own experience in the development of the sea, including the port business and outlined the possibilities for investing in Ukraine.
Shipbuilding, training and certification of seafarers: main themes of round tables
A significant contribution to the further development of the transport industry of Ukraine was made by the round tables organized in the framework of Trans Expo Odessa 2017.
On September 27, the round table “Shipbuilding – Effective Legislative Regulation” was held where participants got acquainted with the dynamics of development of the world shipbuilding industry, discussed the state of the Ukrainian shipbuilding industry and emphasized the need to create a legislative basis for stimulating the revival of the Ukrainian fleet at Ukrainian shipyards.
The topic of seafarers’ professional training was condemned on the second day of the forum at the round table on “Training and Certification of Seafarers Ukrainian Crewing – Prospects for Development and Existing Risks”. The participants of the event analyzed the general condition of training of seafarers in the industry, the reasons for the reduction of professionalism, as well as methods for training improving.
The final event of the forum was the Field Meeting of the Committee for Design, Construction and Technical Operation of Port Engineering and Hydraulic Structures of the Association of Ukrainian Ports Ukrport, where the participants got acquainted with advanced technologies in marine hydrotechnics and their application in the sea and river ports of Ukraine.