On February 6, 2018, an extended briefing of the Ministry of Infrastructure of Ukraine took place at the information agency "Ukrinform". Volodymyr Omelyan, the Minister of Infrastructure, Olexandr Kharchenko, acting director of "Ukravtodor",Yevhen Kravtsov, acting CEO of PJSC "Ukrzaliznytsia", Raivis Veckagans, acting CEO of SE "Ukrainian Sea Ports Authority", Ihor Smilyansky, acting CEO of PJSC "Ukrposhta" and Natalia Forsyuk, the CoST National Secretariat Director took part in the event.
The Minister outlined the key priorities of the Ministry's activities for 2018, in particular, la arge-scale road restoration, an implementation of road safety program, a renewal of Ukrzaliznytsia’s rolling stock, development of ports and attraction of strategic investors to the port sector, reform of Ukrposhta, adoption of infrastructure legislation package and development of digital infrastructure.
According to Volodymyr Omelyan, in 2018 a record amount of funding for the infrastructure will be allocated in the next few years: "In 2018, a sum worth UAH 86 billion will be directed to the development of Ukraine's infrastructure. This is not abstract figures - it is the taxpayers’ funds. And we have to report to the society for every spent hryvnia in one year period".
The Minister of Infrastructure briefed on each of the directions: “This year we are counting on approximately UAH 50 billion financing of the road sector. In detail: the State Road Fund – 32.6 billion, of which: more than 19 billion will be directed to the roads of state importance, 1.5 billion – to the road safety, more than 6 billion – to the roads (M-12-4 (GO Highway), M-03 - 2 billion (Kyiv - Kharkiv - Dovzhanske), N-31 - 2 billion (Dnipro - Tsarichanka - Kobelyaki - Reshetilivka), R-46 - 2 billion (Kharkiv - Bogodukh - Okhtyrka) H-03 - 1 billion (Zhytomyr - Chernivtsi), development of Lviv region roads - 0.4 billion)”.
The Minister stressed that in 2018 regional state administrations will receive UAH 11.5 billion for road restoration: “Decentralization gives more rights, but at the same time more responsibility for local authorities. This year, we transfer over UAH 11.5 billion to the regions. These funds should be effectively used to the road restoration. I will appeal to the Government and the Parliament to approve a decision, that in case of nonuse, these funds should be returned to the State Road Fund.”
Volodymyr Omelyan also noted that the revenues from the customs experiment are planned at the level of UAH 6-7 billion.
The Minister of Infrastructure separately focused on Ukrainian railway development plan. According tohim, the Beskydy Tunnel, the largest infrastructure project of the last decade, is planned to be put into operation 2018. Yevhen Kravtsov, the Head of “Ukrzaliznytsya”, noted that “Ukrzaliznytsia” plans to wind up all works on May 25. “ The topmost priority encompasses leverage of investment in “Ukrzaliznytsia’s” rolling stock to the tune of more than UAH 18 billion. These are: purchase of 30 General Electric locomotives and 60 new passenger cars, modernization of 226 existing passenger cars, manufacture of 3 600 freight cars, modernization of more than 10 thousand freight cars, etc.”, Volodymyr Omelyan said, in 2018, six major infrastructure projects with an estimated cost of UAH 10 billion will start. This is electrification, track reconstruction, etc.”
“In 2018, “Ukrzaliznytsia” finally switches to the market principle of setting the price for freight cars. Also in plans - formation of a vertical company, completion of corporatization”, the Minister added.
Regarding the maritime industry, according to Volodymyr Omelyan, audit of the International Maritime Organization is of a great importance for Ukraine in the 2018.
“ The key priorities are: the full launch of the Maritime Administration and preparation for the corporatization of the Ukrainian Sea Ports Authority. The volume of capital investments will amount UAH 4.3 billion. We will intensify the work for attracting investors, in particular, through concession competitions, privatization of state stevedoring companies, etc.”, stressed the Minister.
Volodymyr Omelyan also informed that more than UAH 3.8 billion will be spent on the development of aviation sector: “The volume of capital investment in Boryspil airport is UAH 2.3 billion, Lviv airport - UAH 34 million, but I hope this amount will be increased. 800 million will be directed on the development regional airports, more than 680 million - to support flight safety.”
The Minister of Infrastructure noted that “Ukrposhta's” capital investment in 2018 will amount to UAH 0.5 billion: “The plans include increasing of volume parcels processing, digitalization of the departments and services, development of the network and infrastructure, launch of courier delivery service, etc.”
Separately, Volodymyr Omelyan stressed that the development of infrastructure requires attraction of large funds. That is why such projects should be transparent: “Three years ago, the Ministry joined the CoST Initiative to ensure accountability of infrastructure projects in road sector. Regional road services open information on road repair projects in accordance with international standards. Information on more than 1000 projects on repairs and reconstruction of highways belonging to the Ukravtodor administration is disclosed. This is a great change. Today, all data disclosed by Ukravtodor can be found on the Open Infrastructure Data Portal.”
“In order to apply the international practice of infrastructure transparency to other subordinate institutions of the Ministry, I call on the heads of enterprises from other sectors to join and publish data on reconstruction works of airports, ports, railways and stations,” added the Minister.