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The Port Council meeting was held at Illichivck Commercial Seaport, where the long term Port Development Plan till 2038 was put together. The key project in the plan is dredging the approach channel and the operational waters down to 15 m depth, and subsequently, to 17 m, as required, the Information-Analytical Bulletin of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine reports.
Experts point out that after the project is completed, the port will be able to expand the list of vessels and grade up with other major ports of the Black Sea. Large vessels (carrying capacity over 100 tons) and container ships of Post Panamax Plus class (capacity of 8000 TEU) will be able to come in the port waters. Experts say that ships like that account for 30% of the world's container ships.
"Today, the port loses its competitive position by depth to its main competitors - the port of Constanta (Romania), Novorossiysk (Russia), Youzhny (Ukraine). We took into account all the wishes of both our current partners and potential investors, for whom the appropriate depth means the ability to optimize the cost of freight," Port Director Olexiy Koshelev said.
The Plan also envisions modernization of hydraulic facilities. The piers will be gradually reconstructed under the public-private partnership. Investors are also invited to get involved in development of terminals and port facilities. The starting date will be determined after the decision is made on the reconstruction of the handling facilities. The Port Development Plan also provides for the reconstruction of power supply systems, including construction of a new "Port" electrical substation.