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26 Sep 2019

Lukashenko: More effort from Ukraine is needed to restore navigation along the Dnieper River

MINSK, 26 September (BelTA) – More active actions on the part of Ukraine are needed to implement the project to restore navigation along the Dnieper River. Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko made the statement during the meeting with representatives of Ukrainian mass media on 26 September, BelTA has learned.

Aleksandr Lukashenko said: “As for Belarus, we’ve done everything [for implementing the project]. There was only one thing left to address (there is one thing for you to address now) – deepening of the river bed. It is necessary to make the Pripyat River and the Dnieper River deeper. We’ve undertaken to deepen the Pripyat River and we’ve done it. It is up to you now to deepen the Dnieper River so that river-marine vessels could travel along the entirety of the river.”

As part of the project plans were made to build a deep water port on the Dnieper River near the village of Nizhniye Zhary, Bragin District, Gomel Oblast. The place is virtually at the border with Ukraine. The river bed between the port and the Kiev water reservoir is supposed to be made deeper, too.

Aleksandr Lukashenko said: “We’ve also used private investments for the project. The port is virtually ready for vessels. If we see Ukraine’s strong interest, we will add to it, we will make a port and will take care of other matters at an even higher level.”

Aleksandr Lukashenko went on saying: “I am convinced it would be a most serious impulse. More than that considering our excellent logistics on land (and not only on land) with the Baltic Sea region. We could bring freight traffic from the north along the river to the Black Sea. The logistics and transit appeal of Ukraine and Belarus is enviable. Jobs will be created. We will become even more dependent on each other. Why shouldn’t we do it?” The head of state stressed that more active actions on the part of Ukraine are needed now.

BelTA reported earlier that the matter of freight transportation along the Dnieper River has been discussed repeatedly at various levels of Belarus-Ukraine contacts. In autumn 2017 the governors of Gomel Oblast and Ukraine’s Kherson Oblast and top executives of the Nikolayev-based company OOO SP Nibulon signed a trilateral memorandum of cooperation and partnership with a view to restoring navigation along the Dnieper River. Loading river-sea vessels with Belarusian cargoes for the sake of delivering them to Europe, Asia, and Africa via the Black Sea is the idea. Such vessels will not require freight transshipment in sea ports, thus greatly reducing the cost of delivery.

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