The Ukrainian highway service Ukravtodor will spend UAH 2 billion on the construction of a new road to the port of Odessa. The State company signed an agreement with LLC “Rostdorstroy” for the construction of a public highway of state significance M-28 Odessa – Yuzhny (M-14) with entrances to the Odessa seaport worth UAH 2.21 billion.
The new road should bypass the territory of the company Euroterminal, which has installed a barrier on the existing road to the port, and charges trucks for $ 16.7 actually per pass. Formally, firms are billed, including for shower services for drivers, although they simply drive through the Euroterminal area to the port to load or unload goods.
During the tender, Ukravtodor rejected the bids of the Turkish group Onur and Elit-Stroy LLC. As a result, the auction took place with the participation of Rostodorstroy and Avtomagistral-Yug. The victory went to “Rostdorstroy” with a discount of only 3.5% of the expected cost of the tender.
At the same time, the construction of the road will actually begin only in 2022, although Ukravtodor at presentations included this road one of its few megaprojects for 2021. But this year, only 2% of the volume of work in monetary terms is planned for financing the project – UAH 48 million, the rest of more than UAH 2 billion is planned to be allocated only in a year.
Back in 2017, the Anti Monopoly Committee of Ukraine (AMCU) fined Euroterminal for abuse of a monopoly. The firm charged $ 17 for each truck heading to the state-owned Odessa Sea Commercial Port to open the barrier and drive through the area. At the same time, there was no other legal entry into the port for trucks.
Euroterminal challenged the AMCU’s decision, but lost all courts, including the Supreme Court, after which it paid a UAH 5.4 million fine. However, he did not fulfill his obligation to end the abuse of his monopoly position, continuing to collect unreasonable payments from carriers.
As a result, Euroterminal excluded all additional services from the justification of the $ 17 fee and left in fact only the opening of the barrier and the passage to the state port. And for all this, he now charges carriers at $ 16.7, that is, only one and a half percent less. The AMCU considered that in this way Euroterminal fulfilled all its obligations.
In April 2020, Minister of Infrastructure Vladislav Krikliy promised to settle the issue of organising free entry to the territory of the Odessa seaport by the end of the year, although President Volodymyr Zelensky asked the mayor of Odessa Gennady Trukhanov to resolve this issue back in July 2019.
Euroterminal LLC belongs to businessman Pavel Lisitsyn, who is close to the mayor of Odessa Gennady Trukhanov. In turn, Rostdorstroy belongs to businessman Yuri Schumacher, who is also close to Trukhanov.