Bill for a minute: how to halt the decline in container handling in the ports of Ukraine

Bill for a minute: how to halt the decline in container handling in the ports of Ukraine

As shown by the discussion at the International Transport Week in Odessa, in order to halt the decline in container handling in Ukraine, it is necessary to significantly reduce the control pressure and simplify the passage of goods at the ports.

According to the Administration of Seaports of Ukraine (ASD), in 2014 Ukrainian harbor transshipment of containers decreased by almost 13 percent, although it retained the leading position in the Black Sea (Ukraine – 29.78%, Russia – 25.65%, Romania – 22, 42%, Georgia – 13.80%, Bulgaria – 8.35%). In January-April this year, container handling in the ports of the country has decreased by 28.2% compared to the same period in 2014 (up to 172 ths. TEU). Carriers are sounding the alarm: it is necessary to take urgent measures, as Ukraine is losing the lead and could drop to third place in the region in terms.

During the past Odessa International Transport Week has identified a number of necessary measures – strategic and tactical – designed to correct the situation. During the round table “Strategy of development of container transport in Ukraine – 2015” representative of the Association of container lines of Ukraine (AKLU), head of transport and agency services “Maersk Ukraine” Dmitry Nezhdanov outlined the main areas of the industry: the simplification of the control procedures at the ports, improving port infrastructure and improvement of the tariff policy.

Measures to be taken in the current year relate primarily to the first direction: the elimination of the need for translation of documents, automation of the process of re-registration line, reducing the number of supervisors in the ports and the introduction of the responsibility for unfounded examination of the load, the introduction of a real free practice in ports.

Free whether the practice? The issue of free practice in the Ukrainian ports of call one of the liveliest discussions during the transport of the week. Opposing view was expressed by the operational manager of SMA CGM Nikolai Vladimirov. Stressing that the carrier was one of the first companies to support in due time the introduction of free practice, he noted that later had to abandon this principle works. “Firstly, we win because of this no more than half an hour – 15-20 minutes versus 40-45 in the normal mode. However, when you exit the port, we can stand in the border closure by passing another vessel or another for some measures – and the entire gain in time is lost. Give free practice for the coming – let’s waste it on “- he said.

Provide guidance port industry still believe that this practice runs. According to the deputy head Vyacheslav ASD Crow, half an hour – it’s a real savings, “During this time, you can unload the containers 50-80. If the carrier is not a big deal, it features its mode of operation.” The deputy head of the administration of the port of Odessa Ruslan Sahautdinov urged to recall that in previous years, often 6-7 container had to be on the roads in anticipation of unloading. “And if we save each of them for 30-40 minutes, it is 28 days in a year. Although I understand that today, this is not an active mode, someone might not feel the need to” – he stressed.

“Konteynerschiki” insist on reducing the number of inspectors at the ports. According to representatives of ASD, the issue lies in the legal plane, and here it is necessary to develop appropriate instruments.

Representatives of the carriers and agent companies made a number of comments. All agreed on the usefulness of free practice, noting that in its implementation at the port should not be any interference. “We all recognize that this is a step in the right direction, but we need to do the following steps,” – said the president AKLU Stefan Klenčí.

Close you can not open one of the key issues of working lines – opening and closing of the state border of Ukraine to the arrival of the ship in a number of national ports, for example – in transit through Odessa and Ilyichevsk. Today boundary is closed when the output of one port and opened again in the following. Carriers and agents appeal to common sense – in order to avoid wasting time and resources of all parties involved. As noted Vyacheslav Crow, at the request of the Administration AKLU seaports claimed solution to this issue – and has already established a working group.

A similar situation – the problem of excessive (according to carriers and agents) the amount of the inspectors at the ports. “Konteynerschiki” insist on reducing their numbers. According to representatives of ASD, the issue lies in the legal plane, and here it is necessary to develop appropriate instruments.

Antiproblemny Bill To resolve pressing issues in the container sector, ASD has developed a draft law on amendments to some legislative acts – the promotion of trade and logistics at the ports. He presented the deputy head of the Administration Vyacheslav crow. The document, among other things, provided for a solution already mentioned issues – in particular, the opening of borders in the first closing of the port and at the exit from the last port of the country.

Also, we are talking about 100 per cent of the preliminary documentary control by the customs authorities on the inspection of the goods solely on the basis of risk analysis and the establishment of responsibility for unfounded examination. In addition, states conduct sanitary and phytosanitary measures with the same staff (due to the fact that they have one submission), on the implementation of environmental control only in case of obvious violation of environmental legislation on the inspection of containerized cargo transported from ship to railway just before loading onto the railway platform – and some other measures.

According to Vyacheslav Voronoi bill has already passed MPs – in the near future we can expect that he will be given official course.

Representatives of related industry associations agree “konteynerschikami” in the urgent need to address those issues. As noted in the discussion “Modern trends in the functioning and development of the port,” the executive director of the Black and Azov Seas (BASPA) Georgiy Tokman, Ukraine today should be more active in attracting freight traffic coming from Asia to Europe, in particular in the Baltic States. To do this, in his opinion, it is necessary to radically solve the problem of missing goods, vehicles and passengers in the Ukrainian harbor – based on international experience. “For example, in the port of Batumi is to unload and place the car came in a container is required about twenty minutes. How many hours or even days spent on it in our ports?” – He said at the same time stressing that the priority in these changes still belongs to the central authorities.