EBRD lends $37 million to Odessa Terminal Holdco Ltd

By Anton Usov

The EBRD is continuing to support the development of transport infrastructure in Ukraine with a $37 million loan to finance the development of a new container terminal in Odessa, the largest port in Ukraine. The project is implemented by Odessa Terminal Holdco Ltd. (OTHL) and its subsidiary Brooklyn-Kiev Port LLC, the operator of the terminal.

EBRD funding will increase the container handling capacity and promote development of logistics at this major Black Sea port and encourage private sector investment in development of the port infrastructure in Ukraine.

In addition to the loan, the EBRD is acquiring five per cent of the shares in OTHL, which is owned by the French company CMA-CGM, the third largest container shipping group in the world, and Brooklyn-Kiev group of companies.

With this project, the total commitments of the EBRD to support the development of Ukrainian transport infrastructure sector will reach EUR 700 million.

Sue Barrett, the EBRD’s Director for Transport, said: “The EBRD supports this important project for Ukraine, backed by a key international player in the container business and successful Ukrainian entrepreneurs. The project is in line with the Bank’s strategy for Ukraine, a key priority of which is improving efficiency and reliability of transport infrastructure. This is the Bank’s first investment in a privately financed port facility in Ukraine and we are ready to support more private involvement in this sector bringing much needed expertise, capital and efficiency to modernise the county’s infrastructure”.

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development is the biggest financial investor in Ukraine. As of 1 July 2009, it had committed €4.3 billion through 179 projects. This year it expects to invest over €1 billion in Ukraine compared with €879million in 2008.