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MARKET FOCUS: UKRAINE Plans for Yalta Marina, a 2,000-berth icon envisaged as the yachting centrepiece of the Crimea. Political tension hampers progress Back in 2012 Ukraine harboured plans to raise €311 million to build 15 new marinas in Crimea and €150 million for the construction and modernisation of several dozens of marinas along the mainland coast. However, Russia’s annexation of Crimea and the subsequent armed conflict in eastern regions has almost completely ruined yachting in the Azov-Black Sea basin. Most of these projects are now on hold until political tension relaxes. Vladislav Vorotnikov reports “Ukraine accounts for one third of the Black Sea coast but the marina industry in the country is not at all developed, primarily due to legal constrains for sailing in small sized vessels,” Nikolay Cherevkov, Crimea’s former Minister of Transport explained. Prior to the current crisis, only 250-300 foreign yachts per year visited Ukraine and, although there is no official information, most people in the industry believe that this figure was even lower in 2014-2016. “The lack of marinas in the country is primarily associated with poor legislative framework for yachting and the lack of custom checkpoints for small size vessels,” Cherevkov suggested. “In addition, there are almost no refuelling stations that meet international standards. The marina industry is, however, quite attractive for investors because in the Crimea alone Ukraine’s development programme envisages an annual revenue of €37 million per year for new marinas,” Cherevkov indicated. Russian hopes for Crimea Since 2014, Russia has been pumping a lot of money into Crimea, primarily targeting infrastructure initiatives. The marina industry hopes to get a slice of the pie. In September 2016, Alexey Andrutsky, president of the Crimea Sailing Federation revealed that by 2021 Russian authorities are going to implement a new programme for the development of yachting in the peninsula. Among other initiatives, this programme will involve building 16 new marinas, Andrutsky said, in a programme based on public and private partnership. According to preliminary information, Russian authorities could inject up to US0 million into the programme and the amount of private investment is yet to be determined. As a result, the southern shore of Crimea could become a Russian-style Monaco with a well-developed network of hotels, congress centres, boutiques, restaurants, fuelling stations and a huge marina designed for 2,000 boats, Andrutsky disclosed. This single marina on the south coast of Crimea in Yalta would become the centre of Crimean yachting and one of the largest marinas on the Black Sea. Although general details of the building Most marinas throughout Ukraine are in very poor condition. - March/April 2017 43

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