21 October 2016

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Maritime sanctions for Crimea made huge gap in Russian trading fleet – analysts

Due to dramatic decrease of public and freight sea transportation to occupied Crimea Kremlin have to fill the gap in up to 200 vessels, Ukraine Today reports citing BlackSeaNews and Maidan of Foreign Affairs.

Although Kremlin keeps telling that foreign naval vessels ignore the sanctions and sail to Crimea, the majority of vessels that carry passengers and cargo to or from the ports of the occupied peninsula are Russian, the monitoring group of theMaidan of Foreign Affairs and BSNews report states, according to Ukraine Today.

According to the monitors' "black list", or rather, the complete database of vessels that violated the Ukrainian legislation and the international sanctions and docked at the ports of the occupied Crimea since its annexation, the number of foreign ships sailing to peninsula decreased dramatically and Kremlin had to replace them by own civil fleet. In 2014 the total number of sanction violators counted 146 vessels, of which 45% were Russian. In 2015, Russian part increased to 63% and over the eight months of this year, the share reached 71%.

Ukraine, Greece developing project to launch ferry serviceThere is a massive process of replacement of vessels sailing to the ports of the occupied Crimea with Russian steamers, either under the Russian flag or having Russian ship-owner, Chief Editor BSNews and Maidan of Foreign Affairs' expertAndryi Klymenko says. It has made a very big problem for the Kremlin, because Russian river-sea fleet appeared to experience a shortage of 200 vessels to provide transportation for the occupied territory, the analysts say.

To cover this shortage Russia, had to lease and then to buy more than 10 modern ferries from Greek ship-owners. It turned out to be a pretty big sum for Russia, suffering from the sanctions, the expert stressed.

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