Crimean logistics demand extraordinary measures to survive through winter
This week Russian Ministry of Transport proposed two changes in national shipping regulations, which may save vital sea link connecting Crimea with mainland in coming winter. There is an obvious and severe shortage of ferries and other types of cargo vessels, which supply Crimea with virtually, everything required for peninsula’s survival. There are two factors which explain this shortage – first being sheer volume of cargoes to be transported by sea; second is related to sanctions imposed by EU on Crimean shipping, and resulting shortage of tonnage. Most part of all cargoes was transported by rail and road, but after annexation of the Crimea and unleashed war in mainland Ukraine, Russia very effectively cut off the land link, and found out as a result, that sea link doesn’t have enough capacities, even in summer time. Hence the measures offered by Ministry of Transport to Russian Government:
To remove 15-years age barrier for vessels registered by Russian Maritime Registry of Shipping, if those vessels are to be engaged in Crimean shipping;
To exempt from customs fees and taxation all vessels bought for Crimean shipping.
Whether it will be enough or not to secure some minimal sea transportation volumes, is the question of near future. Else Russia would have to plea Ukraine to open the land corridor, which is considered by Kremlin as quite a humiliation.