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Continuing conflict in Ukraine prompts Turkish ports to expand amid cargo delays

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Turkish ports are facing increasing wait times for cargo ships due to the ongoing conflict in Ukraine, leading local companies in the industrial hub of Kocaeli to seek expansion of their storage facilities, the Evrensel news website reported.

According to Evrensel, several companies with facilities in Kocaeli are now applying for Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) reports, a tool used to assess the significant effects of a project or development proposal on the environment to justify the expansion of their ports’ back service areas.

Efesan Iron Industry and Trade Inc. is the latest example, having applied to the Ministry of Environment, Urbanization and Climate Change to initiate the “Port Back Service Area” project on a designated area in Kocaeli. The proposed area for expansion covers 16,459.07 square meters out of an authorized 20,599.89 square meters, and the ministry has already announced the commencement of the EIA process. Notably, the Kocaeli Metropolitan Municipality has expressed a positive view on the project in its report.

The primary objective of the project is to address the increasing demand for port storage areas capable of meeting the needs of import and export ships. The extended stay of cargo at Turkish ports, primarily attributed to the Russia-Ukraine war, as well as other global and national developments, has created a pressing need for expanded bonded warehouse facilities. The dynamic changes in the logistics sector, with a significant focus on ports, have also contributed to this demand.

The proposed solution involves converting the currently utilized service road into a port back service area. By doing so, the local industrial companies aim to alleviate the congestion and delays caused by the prolonged stays of cargo at the ports. As global trade patterns evolve amid geopolitical tensions, local industries are swiftly adapting to meet the changing demands and challenges in the maritime sector.

Earlier on Wednesday, Russia attacked Ukraine’s main inland port on the Danube River, sending global food prices higher as Moscow ramps up its use of force to reimpose a blockade of Ukrainian grain exports, Reuters reported.

The port, across the river from NATO-member Romania, has served as the main alternative route out of Ukraine for grain exports since Russia reintroduced its de facto blockade of Ukraine’s Black Sea ports in mid-July.

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